Agency owners getting rich off the backs of nurses? - page 2

Doesnt it just make you sick?????? This entire article is all about how lucrative travel agencies are...... for the OWNERS of the travel agencies! And about what great timing the owners had to... Read More

  1. by   wtpmjgda1
    Quote from vortex72
    This doesnt bother me at all. Its called business. If you want a piece of the pie. work a ton of overtime, save up money, do research, and start your own agency.

    Then after struggling and working your butt off for a few years, MAYBE you can make some big bucks too. Would you have earned it? YES!
    I agree. And then $518 will be seen as what it is. Not much.

    I still hold that if 10% of nurses left a hospital and formed an agency, that hospital would pay them $60+ per hour to contract. It would be a savings over what hospitals pay agencies and there would be no need for training.

    Anyone interested in leaving there job to start an agency?
  2. by   FocusRN
    Okay in threads that have more than one page I only read the first post, so all of my comments are based on the OP. I think this is so true. There is a woman down here, she is an RN, ADN. She was once an LPN and has been a nurse for 15 years. She has had here own agency for 10 years, both travel and local staffing. SHe now has offices down her, in california, and another one opening in New England. And she is making big bucks while the nurses working for her are averaging about $30 and hour. And I think the allure of travel nursing is the free travel and free room and board. But they are still not making enough. Later on down the line I may open an agency of my own. But in my agency I want partners (other nurses). And these partners will be the only ones that will do any work for the agency. That way not only will we make a few bucks an our, but we will all share in the profits. I think that it is very fair.
  3. by   vdutton
    Quote from -jt
    Doesnt it just make you sick??????
    Quote from -jt

    This entire article is all about how lucrative travel agencies are...... for the OWNERS of the travel agencies! And about what great timing the owners had to be cashing in on "the shortage".

    This guy's travel company managed to earn $518 MILLION for him just last year!! $518 MILLION $$$$ for putting nurses into assignments every few weeks. And what % of those hundreds of MILLIONS did the NURSES who did the actual back-breaking work get? According to the article, at the most, $29/hr.....
    It makes me sick........

    Not a word about any benefit to the nurses other than working in a new city and not dealing with hospital politics. As if thats all we need. I know travelers who are paid less than $25/hr for the privilege. Considering the MILLIONS that the owners are pulling inoff of our backs, its a disgrace.

    How interesting that this owner in the article is a former state legislator. I wonder what he knew. Good thing he's not STILL a legislator. He might not want to see the nursing "shortage" solved. Hmmm.... thats a thought. I wonder if any of these agencies are trying to make sure the nursing "shortage" ISNT solved. Might take away their cash-cow.

    I still cant believe it. The nurses working for this guy's travel company managed to earn HIM $518 MILLION just last year alone!! And the article is bragging about it! $518 MILLION $$$$ for sitting in an office & passing nurses around to hospitals every few weeks. And what did the NURSES get???????.......

    <<<
    March 2, 2002
    Tony Fong
    San Diego Union Tribune

    "Filling the need for nurses
    Companies profit as they respond to shortage

    As hospitals and health-care administrators scramble to deal with a widespread shortage of nurses, a number of companies have emerged to capitalize on the deficiency.

    Companies such as San Diego-based AMN Healthcare Services have built a strong business out of supplying temporary nurses to hospitals suffering from a shortage of qualified staffers.By bolstering its roster of nurses and their number of assignments, AMN has seen its revenue grow nearly SIXFOLD during the past three years.

    The demand for nursing services has been so strong that AMN and a competitor, Cross Country Inc. of Boca Raton, Fla., were able to buck the weak market for public stock offerings last year.

    AMN went public Nov. 13, raising $175 MILLION. Its shares closed yesterday at $25.95, up more than 52 percent from the $17 offering price. Cross Country, which went public Oct. 25, closed yesterday at $26.64, up more than 56 percent from its IPO.

    Riding the current bullish wave surrounding the industry, Medical Staffing Network, also in Boca Raton, filed for a public offering in early February.

    Since the late 1990s, Wall Street had viewed health care skeptically, but lately the industry has shown signs of life. And for nurse staffing companies, the time has been ripe for investors.

    "Right now, AMN is positioned in one of the hottest sectors," said Robert Mains, a health-care analyst at Advest Group in Saratoga Springs, N.Y., a minority underwriter in AMN's public offering.

    Fueling such sentiments is a nationwide nursing shortage that experts say is going to get worse because of a shrinking supply of nurses and an expanding need for them.

    Unlike some of its competitors, AMN deals only with travel nurses, not per-diem nurses. A per-diem nurse's assignments can last as little as one shift, but travel nurses typically work on 13-week contracts. They can also crisscross the country, going from one assignment to another.

    Travel nurses are not a long-term solution for the nursing shortage, but the demand is so great that hospitals have no choice but to use them, said Ann Davis, a vice president with the Sharp HealthCare hospital system.

    Sharp typically uses about 100 travel nurses at any time, including 80 from AMN, Davis said.

    "The thing that works nicely is they're here for a 13-week contract . . . and if you need supplemental staff, it's better to have them in, have them oriented and have them stay for a length of time," Davis said.

    Founded in 1985 by Steven C. Francis and his wife, Gayle, AMN was headquartered in Las Vegas before the couple moved it to San Diego two years later. Steven Francis is a former Nevada state assemblyman.

    The company now operates five brands: American Mobile Healthcare, Medical Express, Preferred Healthcare Staffing, Nurses Rx and O'Grady-Peyton International.

    During 2001, AMN had revenue of $517.8 MILLION, a nearly SIXFOLD increase from $87.7 million in 1998. AMN has 25,000 nurses in its database, of whom 6,883 were on assignment during the fourth quarter of 2001, up from 4,048 in the year-before period. AMN has 800 corporate employees, including 550 locally.

    Haas Wheat & Partners, an equity fund based in Dallas, has a 65 percent ownership stake in the company.

    The company contracts with 2,500 hospitals in 50 states, constituting 40 percent of all acute-care hospitals and half of all acute-care beds in the country, making it the biggest travel-nurse company in the nation, AMN officials said.

    Although Francis said that "the health of our industry isn't just reliant on the nursing shortage," the shortage obviously was a major factor in the company's decision to go public when it did.

    During the fall, when AMN and Cross Country went public, Wall Street was enduring one of its worst years for IPOs. Just 87 IPOs were completed in 2001, the fewest since 1979. In September, there were no public offerings, as the effects of terrorist attacks and a deteriorating economy rattled the markets.

    While hospitals have always had to deal with staffing shortages, what makes the current shortage opportune for companies like AMN is its magnitude and the fact that no short-term solutions are in sight, analysts said.

    The dilemma is this: There has been an exodus of nurses from the profession, and fewer students are choosing the field. At the same time, as baby boomers grow older, there is an increasing need for nurses.

    "In the past, there was a feeling the industry would right itself," but that is no longer true, said Mains of Advest.

    This year, the Federation of American Hospitals and the American Hospital Association said one out of seven hospitals nationwide reported having more than 20 percent of their registered-nursing positions unfilled.

    While hospitals have offered significant bonuses and recruited nurses from outside the United States, those measures have shown only marginal benefits.

    Similarly, the effects of the recent nurse-to-patient ratio requirements established by California are unclear. While nursing officials hail it as a major step toward easing staffing problems, hospital administrators warn that there isn't a large-enough pool of nurses from which to hire. As a result, hospitals may have to mothball beds to meet the requirements.

    In the meantime, hospitals have increasingly relied on nurse staffing companies to fill the holes.

    Hospitals spent $7.2 billion in 2000 for temporary employees, the majority of whom were nurses, according to the Staffing Industry Report, an industry newsletter. For 2002, it estimated that spending will increase to $10.6 billion.

    The current shortage has resulted in more nurses going into the travel-nurse sector, Francis said.

    "They're able to get higher pay rates because there's a demand . . . but there's also more opportunity for them," he said. "When you think about it, you can go anywhere in the country and work."

    AMN charges hospitals an average of about $45 an hour for its nurses and pays the nurses about $29. AMN also pays for its nurses' housing and health insurance and offers 401(k) benefits.>>>

    http://www.uniontrib.com/news/union...ews_1b2amn.html


    $518 MILLION dollars last year alone & the RN made just $29/hr in California. These people are becoming millionaires off the backs of nurses. Same as hospital executives.

    We should all become independent contractors and cut out the middle man. WE have the skills that are in demand. Why shouldnt WE be the ones earning the big bucks for those skills. Geez..... it never ends. Why do nurses let everybody else feed off of them?

    Comments can be sent to the writer at:

    tony.fong@uniontrib.com
  4. by   vdutton
    You should be upset at the hospital admin. for paying the travel nurse owner instead of the staff of the hospital!....good point...but directed in the wrong direction.
  5. by   Foxfour
    Quote from -jt
    Doesnt it just make you sick??????

    This entire article is all about how lucrative travel agencies are...... for the OWNERS of the travel agencies! And about what great timing the owners had to be cashing in on "the shortage".

    This guy's travel company managed to earn $518 MILLION for him just last year!! $518 MILLION $$$$ for putting nurses into assignments every few weeks. And what % of those hundreds of MILLIONS did the NURSES who did the actual back-breaking work get? According to the article, at the most, $29/hr.....
    It makes me sick........

    Not a word about any benefit to the nurses other than working in a new city and not dealing with hospital politics. As if thats all we need. I know travelers who are paid less than $25/hr for the privilege. Considering the MILLIONS that the owners are pulling inoff of our backs, its a disgrace.

    How interesting that this owner in the article is a former state legislator. I wonder what he knew. Good thing he's not STILL a legislator. He might not want to see the nursing "shortage" solved. Hmmm.... thats a thought. I wonder if any of these agencies are trying to make sure the nursing "shortage" ISNT solved. Might take away their cash-cow.

    I still cant believe it. The nurses working for this guy's travel company managed to earn HIM $518 MILLION just last year alone!! And the article is bragging about it! $518 MILLION $$$$ for sitting in an office & passing nurses around to hospitals every few weeks. And what did the NURSES get???????.......

    <<<
    March 2, 2002
    Tony Fong
    San Diego Union Tribune

    "Filling the need for nurses
    Companies profit as they respond to shortage

    As hospitals and health-care administrators scramble to deal with a widespread shortage of nurses, a number of companies have emerged to capitalize on the deficiency.

    Companies such as San Diego-based AMN Healthcare Services have built a strong business out of supplying temporary nurses to hospitals suffering from a shortage of qualified staffers.By bolstering its roster of nurses and their number of assignments, AMN has seen its revenue grow nearly SIXFOLD during the past three years.

    The demand for nursing services has been so strong that AMN and a competitor, Cross Country Inc. of Boca Raton, Fla., were able to buck the weak market for public stock offerings last year.

    AMN went public Nov. 13, raising $175 MILLION. Its shares closed yesterday at $25.95, up more than 52 percent from the $17 offering price. Cross Country, which went public Oct. 25, closed yesterday at $26.64, up more than 56 percent from its IPO.

    Riding the current bullish wave surrounding the industry, Medical Staffing Network, also in Boca Raton, filed for a public offering in early February.

    Since the late 1990s, Wall Street had viewed health care skeptically, but lately the industry has shown signs of life. And for nurse staffing companies, the time has been ripe for investors.

    "Right now, AMN is positioned in one of the hottest sectors," said Robert Mains, a health-care analyst at Advest Group in Saratoga Springs, N.Y., a minority underwriter in AMN's public offering.

    Fueling such sentiments is a nationwide nursing shortage that experts say is going to get worse because of a shrinking supply of nurses and an expanding need for them.

    Unlike some of its competitors, AMN deals only with travel nurses, not per-diem nurses. A per-diem nurse's assignments can last as little as one shift, but travel nurses typically work on 13-week contracts. They can also crisscross the country, going from one assignment to another.

    Travel nurses are not a long-term solution for the nursing shortage, but the demand is so great that hospitals have no choice but to use them, said Ann Davis, a vice president with the Sharp HealthCare hospital system.

    Sharp typically uses about 100 travel nurses at any time, including 80 from AMN, Davis said.

    "The thing that works nicely is they're here for a 13-week contract . . . and if you need supplemental staff, it's better to have them in, have them oriented and have them stay for a length of time," Davis said.

    Founded in 1985 by Steven C. Francis and his wife, Gayle, AMN was headquartered in Las Vegas before the couple moved it to San Diego two years later. Steven Francis is a former Nevada state assemblyman.

    The company now operates five brands: American Mobile Healthcare, Medical Express, Preferred Healthcare Staffing, Nurses Rx and O'Grady-Peyton International.

    During 2001, AMN had revenue of $517.8 MILLION, a nearly SIXFOLD increase from $87.7 million in 1998. AMN has 25,000 nurses in its database, of whom 6,883 were on assignment during the fourth quarter of 2001, up from 4,048 in the year-before period. AMN has 800 corporate employees, including 550 locally.

    Haas Wheat & Partners, an equity fund based in Dallas, has a 65 percent ownership stake in the company.

    The company contracts with 2,500 hospitals in 50 states, constituting 40 percent of all acute-care hospitals and half of all acute-care beds in the country, making it the biggest travel-nurse company in the nation, AMN officials said.

    Although Francis said that "the health of our industry isn't just reliant on the nursing shortage," the shortage obviously was a major factor in the company's decision to go public when it did.

    During the fall, when AMN and Cross Country went public, Wall Street was enduring one of its worst years for IPOs. Just 87 IPOs were completed in 2001, the fewest since 1979. In September, there were no public offerings, as the effects of terrorist attacks and a deteriorating economy rattled the markets.

    While hospitals have always had to deal with staffing shortages, what makes the current shortage opportune for companies like AMN is its magnitude and the fact that no short-term solutions are in sight, analysts said.

    The dilemma is this: There has been an exodus of nurses from the profession, and fewer students are choosing the field. At the same time, as baby boomers grow older, there is an increasing need for nurses.

    "In the past, there was a feeling the industry would right itself," but that is no longer true, said Mains of Advest.

    This year, the Federation of American Hospitals and the American Hospital Association said one out of seven hospitals nationwide reported having more than 20 percent of their registered-nursing positions unfilled.

    While hospitals have offered significant bonuses and recruited nurses from outside the United States, those measures have shown only marginal benefits.

    Similarly, the effects of the recent nurse-to-patient ratio requirements established by California are unclear. While nursing officials hail it as a major step toward easing staffing problems, hospital administrators warn that there isn't a large-enough pool of nurses from which to hire. As a result, hospitals may have to mothball beds to meet the requirements.

    In the meantime, hospitals have increasingly relied on nurse staffing companies to fill the holes.

    Hospitals spent $7.2 billion in 2000 for temporary employees, the majority of whom were nurses, according to the Staffing Industry Report, an industry newsletter. For 2002, it estimated that spending will increase to $10.6 billion.

    The current shortage has resulted in more nurses going into the travel-nurse sector, Francis said.

    "They're able to get higher pay rates because there's a demand . . . but there's also more opportunity for them," he said. "When you think about it, you can go anywhere in the country and work."

    AMN charges hospitals an average of about $45 an hour for its nurses and pays the nurses about $29. AMN also pays for its nurses' housing and health insurance and offers 401(k) benefits.>>>

    http://www.uniontrib.com/news/union...ews_1b2amn.html


    $518 MILLION dollars last year alone & the RN made just $29/hr in California. These people are becoming millionaires off the backs of nurses. Same as hospital executives.

    We should all become independent contractors and cut out the middle man. WE have the skills that are in demand. Why shouldnt WE be the ones earning the big bucks for those skills. Geez..... it never ends. Why do nurses let everybody else feed off of them?

    Comments can be sent to the writer at:

    tony.fong@uniontrib.com
    You go Jt!!!!!!! As one person commented, Steven and Gayle worked hard for their money. Well, I worked hard for mine also. Steven and Gayle were not up with me until 3:00 AM as I was filling out my 24 drug cards for my 7:00AM ICU clinicals. They also were not with me as I studied for I don't know how many grueling days for NCLEX. My point is, we nurses are the ones who put all of our blood, sweat, and tears into what we have become. We deserve every penny of what the hospital pays these companies. I agree--becoming an independent nurse contractor is the way to go.
    I know one of the reasons nurses are not becoming INC is because until I joined this forum about a month ago, I never heard of an INC. I graduated last year from a BSN program and not one word about an INC was ever mentioned. Other than forums like this, does anybody have any suggestions about how to get info. out there about an INC? There is power in numbers and our numbers are huge. Just image how far our collective voice could go if just for one day we all decide not to go to work until we were payed what we were worth. We our the backbone of the health system. Without us--the health system would crumble.
  6. by   eddy
    Quote from vortex72
    This doesnt bother me at all. Its called business. If you want a piece of the pie. work a ton of overtime, save up money, do research, and start your own agency.

    Then after struggling and working your butt off for a few years, MAYBE you can make some big bucks too. Would you have earned it? YES!
    Completely agreed.

    I ran a small accounting/tax firm prior to getting into nursing for about 5 years. I had 6 employees. I charged per hour for their time. I paid them an hourly rate for time worked. In order to make a profit I had to have a bill rate that was about 33% above what I paid the employee. That means that if I paid the employee $25 per hour I had to bill the client $37.50 per hour. Remember, I had to cover overhead expenses like liability insurance, errors and ommissions insurance, work comp, unemployment insurance, health insurance, vacation and sick time (paid for not working), retirement plan contributions, withholding taxes on employee wages, my office space rent, advertising, phone lines and long distance, internet access, association dues, utilities, interest expenses on my line of credit and business startup loan, office supplies, technology costs (new computers, fax machines, copiers, printers, etc.), printing and reproduction costs, office furniture, equipment maintenance, legal fees, chamber of commerce memberships, phone book listings, and on and on and on. After all of this was paid for, I got to pay myself (yay!), which didn't amount to making me an overnight millionaire by any means but was USUALLY a fairly comfortable living. Of course, there were good and bad times and unforeseen expenses that would arise, so I was NEVER guaranteed a specific amount or anything at all for that matter (which was true at times!).

    Hmmm... Isn't this EXACTLY the same thing as a nurse agency? I wasn't doing anything wrong. I was running a business. That's how ALL businesses work. We HAVE to pay an employee less than we generate in revenue. Otherwise we don't exist. There are many other costs that come in to play besides your paycheck.

    Unless you believe everyone should work for themselves and create their own businesses (that would mean eliminating unions, unemployment benefits, work comp insurance, and on and one in terms of protection) you need to do some real research and formulate an argument based on fact NOT jealousy.

    People were always telling me "it must be nice to own the business"... "don't have to report to anyone".... "get to do what you want".... "make your own hours"... "make tons of money".... etc. What those who haven't done it fail to understand is that I SACRAFICED a TON to make that business successful. I worked twice the hours as my employees for no extra pay and if it failed I lost everything I owned.... They just had to find another job. Ultimately, that is part of the reason I chose to sell the business (yes for a nice sum of money) stash the money away for retirement and became a happy working stiff again.

    The grass isn't ALWAYS greener and just because you have an opinion doesn't mean you know a thing about what you are talking about.

    It's kind of a "Put up or shut up." Otherwise you are WAY out of line.

    Thanks for reading.
    Last edit by eddy on Jan 21, '05
  7. by   kbarron2004
    I have been considering contracting myself out in my area but I'm not sure how to do this. Can you help me? Do you have a sample of a contract that I could see? How do you approach hospitals with this issue?

    I would really, really appreciate any advice you could give me.
    Please send email if you wouldn't mind letting me see a sample of a contract that is effective.




    Quote from theduanes
    I agree, that independently contracting is the way to go!

    I have done quite well at contracting myself out for the last 6 years. My advice to all who want to independently contract is, don't give up and perservere!!!!
    Last edit by NRSKarenRN on Apr 15, '05 : Reason: safety editied email addy
  8. by   Arrow 1
    Ive read all the posts and there Are alot of Agencies reaping pretty substantial rewards. Its true as well that when running an agency there are alot of outgoing costs for that agency. One way to look at it in most cases is the larger the company/corporation, the more pressure they will be under to increase profits. I worked for a large public staffing firm and eventually choose to leave due to the, shall we say shady, corporate environment. If your looking for a more flexible situation, and a company that will work around your requests, go with something smaller. Feel free to IM anytime, I can give some suggestions on various companies.
  9. by   eddy
    Quote from Arrow 1
    Ive read all the posts and there Are alot of Agencies reaping pretty substantial rewards. Its true as well that when running an agency there are alot of outgoing costs for that agency. One way to look at it in most cases is the larger the company/corporation, the more pressure they will be under to increase profits. I worked for a large public staffing firm and eventually choose to leave due to the, shall we say shady, corporate environment. If your looking for a more flexible situation, and a company that will work around your requests, go with something smaller. Feel free to IM anytime, I can give some suggestions on various companies.
    I agree. Smaller local agencies tend to be more attentive to your wishes and provide a much better overall compensation package. Plus, you tend not to have the crazy turnover in staffers like you see with the nationwide big corporate agencies. I've been in many different cities as an agency nurse and each time it seemed that one or two local agencies were the definate leaders in the market while the big chain/franshise/corporate agencies always trailed behind. I think a lot of that can be attributed to more involved owners rather than a detached CEO that is only worried about the price of the stock.
  10. by   nubins397
    How do you contract yourself out? I would really like to know also .
  11. by   TN1stCAVCSA
    Yeah travel agencies are making a killing....instead of complaining im trying to fiqure out a way to start my own.... but i aint gonna work for 29.00 an hr im currently on a travel assignment in CA from a company based in San Deigo and im getting a mere 35.00 an hr...other benes include 575.00 for housing and they furnished the apt..... 600 travel expense to/from the location...and then im working prn where the rate is greater than 36 an hr

    So no criticism here just show me a way to start my own

    MOC
  12. by   earthlovers123
    Quote from eddy
    Completely agreed.

    I ran a small accounting/tax firm prior to getting into nursing for about 5 years. I had 6 employees. I charged per hour for their time. I paid them an hourly rate for time worked. In order to make a profit I had to have a bill rate that was about 33% above what I paid the employee. That means that if I paid the employee $25 per hour I had to bill the client $37.50 per hour. Remember, I had to cover overhead expenses like liability insurance, errors and ommissions insurance, work comp, unemployment insurance, health insurance, vacation and sick time (paid for not working), retirement plan contributions, withholding taxes on employee wages, my office space rent, advertising, phone lines and long distance, internet access, association dues, utilities, interest expenses on my line of credit and business startup loan, office supplies, technology costs (new computers, fax machines, copiers, printers, etc.), printing and reproduction costs, office furniture, equipment maintenance, legal fees, chamber of commerce memberships, phone book listings, and on and on and on. After all of this was paid for, I got to pay myself (yay!), which didn't amount to making me an overnight millionaire by any means but was USUALLY a fairly comfortable living. Of course, there were good and bad times and unforeseen expenses that would arise, so I was NEVER guaranteed a specific amount or anything at all for that matter (which was true at times!).

    Hmmm... Isn't this EXACTLY the same thing as a nurse agency? I wasn't doing anything wrong. I was running a business. That's how ALL businesses work. We HAVE to pay an employee less than we generate in revenue. Otherwise we don't exist. There are many other costs that come in to play besides your paycheck.

    Unless you believe everyone should work for themselves and create their own businesses (that would mean eliminating unions, unemployment benefits, work comp insurance, and on and one in terms of protection) you need to do some real research and formulate an argument based on fact NOT jealousy.

    People were always telling me "it must be nice to own the business"... "don't have to report to anyone".... "get to do what you want".... "make your own hours"... "make tons of money".... etc. What those who haven't done it fail to understand is that I SACRAFICED a TON to make that business successful. I worked twice the hours as my employees for no extra pay and if it failed I lost everything I owned.... They just had to find another job. Ultimately, that is part of the reason I chose to sell the business (yes for a nice sum of money) stash the money away for retirement and became a happy working stiff again.

    The grass isn't ALWAYS greener and just because you have an opinion doesn't mean you know a thing about what you are talking about.

    It's kind of a "Put up or shut up." Otherwise you are WAY out of line.

    Thanks for reading.
    Good post
  13. by   Jessy_RN
    It's the same exact thing with construction contractors. They rake in big bucks and pay the workers a fraction of what they are charging to have the construction built. (hubby works as a construction worker)

    Needless to say, it would be nice if he could just go out and get an independant job on his own but no one would hire him because you need insurance all this extremely expensive equipment and the help of a team.

    There is no other choice but to take it however it comes.

    I am not going to agree or disagree wether this should be the same thing in nursing cause I am a student and haven't worked in the field, but just wanted to express my view from the contruction point of view

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Agency owners getting rich off the backs of nurses?