Seriously thinking of doing agency work. Pros and cons? - page 3

by LTCNS | 13,777 Views | 25 Comments

I'm a LPN with an extensive background in LTC and currently employed in a wound healing clinic. I'm at the point in my career and life that I would like to work when I choose as I am tired and in pain (Fibromyalgia,... Read More


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    take one contract at a time. If you like your recruiter and the company ,it benefits all of you. I enjoy traveling and my theory is; if I like where I am at and you offer an extension, ok if not I can leave without all the hoopla. Same goes for the companies I have worked with - I can take a second contract or search for someone that I feels is a better fit for me
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    BahoRN don't work for Parallon whatever you do....
    stevengarbs and BahoRN like this.
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    I second the motion to these! Parallon doesn't quietly understand the importance proper work management.
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    Quote from BSNbeDONE
    As an agency nurse, you WILL get the worst of the worst patients on the floor. Be prepared! The beauty is the pay and you get to pick the days that you are subjected to unfair assignments. As a guest in a facility, it would reflect poorly on your agency if you complained about the assignment that you received.
    I've heard this many times and getting heavy patient assignments sounds like the norm at agencies. However I have to wonder, at what point is this ok when it is the patients that are effected and your license is on the line with an assignment, that may at times, be more than the nurse can safely handle? For this reason I would hesitate to work for an agency despite its perks. I suppose some agencies are better then others in this regard, which is where researching the place thoroughly beforehand would be beneficial.

    When I think of agency positions, I'm taken back to recollect the (horror) stories a former nursing instructor shared with me when she worked at an agency for a outpatient post-op rehab center. She described crazy shifts where she had 11 patients that were mostly complete care needing assistance to reposition or walk to the bathroom. She of course received the hardest patients "that none of the the other nurses wanted" and was expected to provide all their care and none of the nurses assisted her if she needed help. They had this attitude like you're getting paid more then me I'm not helping you. She was a really great instructor and no doubt a fabulous nurse but I can't imagine ever putting myself under such dreadful conditions, for any amount of pay. Under those circumstances, it's only a matter of time before something awful happens to one of the patients because the nurse was stretched too thin and it was an "expected" heavy assignment for an agency nurse to take. I WOULD be that nurse to say enough is enough, this practice is going to get someone injured or killed. Not on my watch and not on my license!!! Ok end of rant!

    Hopefully not all agency positions are that bad!

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    Everyone seems to be talking about travelling.
    I work for a temp agency and schedule by the week and/or month. I used to fill in on staff positions at various hospitals. It's true that some facilities 'dump' on the 'rent-a-nurses'. With my agency I'd agree to one or two shifts, and whether or not I did more shifts or decided 'don't EVER send me back THERE!' was contingent on how I felt after completing my Look-See shifts. At that time I worked at 4 different hospitals, depending on need. What made it ok was if one shift was horrible, the next one might not be.
    I can't say I was always warmly embraced by facility staff, but once they had me working with them a few times and saw I held up my end of the bargain and didn't grouse, it got so they would say "Oh, thank goodness it's YOU."
    One thing to be aware of:
    Needs of facilities do rise and fall, as does the census for PDN cases within the agency, and if things are in the slump stage, it can mess with your bill-paying.
    parker86 likes this.
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    I had a really good experience as a med/surg agency nurse in between jobs. Most everyone was very welcoming and I felt like I fit right in-without having to be subjected to whatever politics were going on in their workplace. Plus being able to self-schedule and receiving a great hourly rate was awesome. Actually, I ended up using the charge nurse as a professional reference for the permanent position I ended up taking.
    On the downside is being cancelled less than 2 hours before the shift and possibly the "heavier patients" comment although I never remember being all that stressed out.

    My agency was Medical Staffing Network..
    No Stars In My Eyes and parker86 like this.


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