An overview of nursing in Europe: a SWOT analysis

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This article sets out a global analysis of the weaknesses, threats, strengths and opportunities that define the current situation of nursing in Europe. The nursing profession in Europe is suffering from a crisis of self-efficacy with the syndrome of burnout being one of its consequences. Other weaknesses include shortage of staff, job insecurity, devalued nursing image in society and the lack of recognition of emotional and psychological dimensions of care. The threats to this profession are linked to the lack of prestige and social recognition and to the current economic crisis in Europe. The European economic crisis favours staff shortages and increased European migration flow. The strength of the group lies in the art of caring, which is its defining feature. Primary Care Nursing and Hospital Liaison Nursing demonstrate the great professional adaptability in meeting the needs of the ever-changing society. The European Higher Education Area and the strengthening of the specialties provide opportunities for the nursing profession. Both represent an important progress towards solid professionalism that will give nursing greater visibility. Moreover, nursing must implement strategies to disseminate its activity and emerge from anonymity. Nursing must show society the image it wants to project.

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