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  1. Graham, Elizabeth MMgt, DN, RN
  2. Donoghue, Judith PhD, DNE, BA (Hons)
  3. Duffield, Christine PhD, MHP, BScN, RN
  4. Griffiths, Rhonda PhD, MSc(Hons), BEd(Nurs), CM, RN
  5. Bichel-Findlay, Jen HScD, MN, MPH, BAppSc, GDipN, DipAppSc, RN
  6. Dimitrelis, Sofia MPhil, MPharm, BMedSci


Objective: To identify the reasons older RNs (>=45 years) remain in the healthcare workforce.


Background: Despite predictions of early retirements of older nurses, many continue to work past the age when they can gain access to their retirement funds.


Methods: The authors surveyed nurses older than 45 years in New South Wales, Australia.


Results: The need for income was the most common reason for staying in nursing (61.9%; n = 210), with nearly 43% (n = 130) identifying this as the main reason for staying.


Conclusions: Retaining older nurses in the workforce is an important strategy for managing workforce shortages. Nurse executives will need to consider strategies that will enhance retention of older nurses and focus on the reasons older nurses want to keep working.