Did I screw up?

  1. I've been working for this company for a couple of months now exclusively at this one hospital. I love it there. (doubt I'll ever get to go back now.) The last 3 times I've been scheduled to work they canceled me, Including this morning. Then after I've already made plans and since I was up started baking for my daughters bake sale which has to be done by tonight and I only found out last night, they called me back. It was a mistake, can I please come in? I'm generally a pushover so I said yes. I turn off the oven, start putting stuff up, get in the shower and then decide that it isn't exactly fair treatment to be canceled and then return called. Especially when I had things to do (bake those dang 7 items before tonight for a cheerleader bake sale). So I called them back and told them my mistake I couldn't work. They were nice enough about it but I bet I just screwed myself out of any further work at that hospital.
    I know cancellations happen. How well I know. But how would you handle the situation if it happened to you? By the way it was all taking place from 451am when they first canceled to 526 when they called me back to 541 when I called them back. Technically since she had told me to just be there at 8, I was within my two hour window.

    As agency I know we have to put up with scheduling issues but they have had me at the top of the cancellation list for two weeks and now they expect me to just jump up twice in one day and run 60 miles probably to get the worst patients since I'd be getting there late.
    I'm just very upset. Hope I didn't burn any bridges but they need to have the schedule nailed down by the time the agencies call for confirmation. Don't ya think? Or am I totally in the wrong here?

    Honest info never hurts me so hit me with you best shot.

    DJ
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  2. 6 Comments

  3. by   bethin
    Does your agency have a policy on this? I know mine does - if called off you have to be availabe for one hour after the start of your shift. Shifts here generally start at 0700 so I would have to be available for call back until 0800.

    IMO, I think it was unprofessional. I get that you're upset, I would be too. Have you tried talking to them about all your cancellations? And why are you at the top of the list, especially for two weeks? I really can't say if you've hurt your chances of working there again. I guess that depends on what kind of worker you are.

    Good luck!
  4. by   jordankreationz
    Quote from bethin
    Does your agency have a policy on this? I know mine does - if called off you have to be availabe for one hour after the start of your shift. Shifts here generally start at 0700 so I would have to be available for call back until 0800.

    IMO, I think it was unprofessional. I get that you're upset, I would be too. Have you tried talking to them about all your cancellations? And why are you at the top of the list, especially for two weeks? I really can't say if you've hurt your chances of working there again. I guess that depends on what kind of worker you are.

    Good luck!
    Thank you.
    No I haven't talked to them about my numerous cancellations. My recruiter only just got back from vacation and I think her fill in and the scheduler at the hospital didn't get along or something. The hospital is 70-80% agency so it gets chaotic.
    The kind of worker I am is that when I am scheduled I get there 15 minutes early and I stay until everything is done, no matter how late. I never take a full lunch break. I always help the other nurses and techs because we are all in the same boat. I'm kind to my patients and actually sit in their rooms and spend time with them instead of gossiping in the break room.
    I have gone in numerous times when they called 2 hours into a shift because of a scheduling mishap and I jumped and went when I didn't have to. In fact the first time I'd not even had an orientation of the hospital. Ran thru the whole day not knowing where anything was or who anyone was.
    My agency doesn't have a policy on this that I am aware of though it is something to discuss with them. I know that I have to call in 2 hours prior but that is if I am canceling on them which I have never done. (unless you count today which I don't since they canceled me first). I've never been told that I have to maintain availability for hours after they canceled me.
    Thanks for your input. And yeah it probably was unprofessional on both the part of myself and of the hospital. It's a small 22 bed hospital floor so it shouldn't be that hard to keep up with who is where and on what day.
    I'll definitely ask them what the proper procedure is.

    DJ
  5. by   bethin
    From your explanation, I don't think you burned any bridges. You sound like an very good employee. If they ask questions, just tell them what you wrote.

    I wouldn't worry about it too much.
  6. by   jordankreationz
    Well I just got an email from my recruiter. She never said a word about the situation and just told me what my schedule was for the next month so I guess it's all good. I hated to do it, but I also hate to give someone the impression that if they want to walk all over me it's fine. Agency or no, the hospital should show enough professionalism not to cancel someone and then call them back. At least this hospital which is a rehab hospital and never gets new patients at night, etc etc.
    As for me, my new rule is if I get canceled, I turn my phone off or don't answer. That way they made the final move. Not me. Might not be ethical or professional but it keeps me from getting up and down and up and down.
    So far I've baked 2 pans of brownies and a cake toward my goal so it's a good thing I was off today after all, since I wouldn't have gotten home til after 830 tonight. I'll be glad when high school is over with!!

    Thanks,
    DJ
  7. by   RN1989
    If they really like you, chances are they will not have a problem. I've had this same situation come up on numerous occasions. They usually waited to call me back until after the shift started and someone was a no-show. Since I have rarely worked close to my job, it has usually taken me one hour of highway driving speeds to get there. Add in rush hour and it would take me 2-3 hours to get to some places. I tell the agency up front that this is how long it takes me and that the hospital has until such and such time to call me back, after which I am no longer available. I will not knowingly be late for work. Three times I allowed one place to call me in late and by the time I got there it was 9-10 am and literally none of my patients had been cared for. No breakfast, no insulin, no vs, no pain meds - nothing. So I tell the agency and hospital if needed, that it is not a matter of my willingness but a patient safety and quality issue. I understand if things get crazy at the last minute, but when I see that the house sup has a pattern of inability to staff properly, that is not my problem. I have never had a hospital not take me back becuase I refused to come in after cancelling. But I have seen these hospitals do this to me and then figure out that they'd better quit screwing up the staffing to start with. (found out that at several hospitals they kept calling their own float pool nurses and were waiting until very late for call backs. So they'd cancel me just sure that one of their nurses would agree to work but when they never called back, THEN the hospital called trying to get me back. Poor planning on their part does not constitute an emergency on my part.)
  8. by   CA_ABQ
    I don't think you screwed up, but, if it's weighing on you, I'd talk to the agency and clear the air.

    The reason so many shifts get cancelled is because hospitals have one agency set up as their "vendor manager". They get the calls first. If they can't fill the shift, then other agencies start trying. However, if the "vendor manager" comes back an hour later and finds someone, they'll cancel the nurse from the alternate agency so they will get the billing.

    If you're having this issue, I'd look for an agency that is the vendor manager of the healthcare systems for which you are working. That way, you won't get bumped.

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