Ageism in nursing

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AimAgeism in health care delivery and nursing poses a fundamental threat to health and society. In this commentary, implications of age discrimination are presented to generate an agenda for action in nursing management.BackgroundIn nations like the United States and the United Kingdom, nursing is an ageing profession caring for an ageing society where age discrimination takes many forms and has broad impact.EvaluationThis commentary critically synthesizes the literature on ageism and relevant data on ageing societies for nurse managers and other leaders.Key issuesInvestigations of ageism suggest that discrimination negatively affects health and results in poor health care experiences. Age discrimination is present in nursing, exacerbating workforce shortages and limiting the use of expertise within the profession.ConclusionNursing faces a future for which understanding ageing societies and ageism is essential. An agenda for the future is proposed.Implications for nursing managementNurse managers possess the power to enact an agenda for combating ageism in health care and nursing.

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