Does your medical facility have mandatory overtime for nurses? - page 2

Here is this month's survey question: Does your medical facility have mandatory overtime for nurses? Currently Nurses are striking over this very issue at St. Vincent Hospital in Worcester,... Read More

  1. by   Toots
    Originally posted by bshort:
    Here is this month's survey question:

    Does your medical facility have mandatory overtime for nurses?

    Currently Nurses are striking over this very issue at St. Vincent Hospital in Worcester, Massachusetts. For more info, visit the MNA strike page: http://www.allnurses.com/jump.cgi?ID=1717


    We encourage your comments and discussion on this question. To post your comments, just click on the "Post Reply" button.

    Also, if you havent voted, please take a minute to vote at the bottom of the page at: http://allnurses.com/

    [This message has been edited by bshort (edited April 18, 2000).]
    Our hospital is unionized and our contract states that nurses cannot be required to stay over after their scheduled shift unless an "emergency". The nurse managers declare the unit "unsafe" and consider it an "emergency" situation which would compromise patient care and, therefore, someone is mandated to stay. Usually someone will then "volunteer" to stay perhaps to "save" someone else who would be otherwise forced to because they have a more pressing need to get home on time. We finally decided not to officially "volunteer" because management used it against us when we grieved the situation. We therefore never 'officially' volunteer,someone stays because if we all left we could be charged with abandonment,and immediately file an unsafe staffing report. We're in contract negotiations now and this is a MAJOR issue with us -- in fact, you may be hearing more about our Chicago area hospital in the future as we may end up in a strike sitation as well -- negotiations are not going well.
  2. by   OB4ME
    The last hospital I worked at required all staff to sign up for a total of one extra shift a month. You could do either straight time and come in unless they call to cancel you, or take it as call, where you'd get paid time-and-a-half when they call you in. You could also supposedly sign up as two half shifts, or one whole shift. This, however, never worked, because they would force you to stay the whole shift if they needed you, even if you had only committed yourself to 6 hrs. Management never jumped into the count to take patients when staffing was short. And on your days off, your phone was always ringing-with someone on the other end trying to coerce you into coming in on your day off! It's no wonder people were quitting as fast as they'd hire someone! Where I'm working now, staff is required to sign up for 2 extra shifts a month, also your choice on call or straight time. However, the "extras" are the first people cancelled. Everything possible is done to see that you go home on time. And management is often seen "jumping into the count" and taking patients when staffing is tight! I think staff can handle alot of stress and is often willing to bend over backwards to help the unit, AS LONG AS THEY FEEL MANAGEMENT IS SUPPORTIVE, AND IS DOING THE BEST IT CAN TO HIRE AND RETAIN NEW STAFF!
  3. by   Charles in charge
    The facility I currently work in doesn't have a stated mandatory overtime policy and its been hard on the nursing supervisors. It seems hard to balance the priority of providing excellent care for the community and the necessity of keeping staff around to continue that care another day. I have heard one supervisor ask in digust "why did these people ever become nurses?" It would be nice to have staff that would volunteer and help each other out but not be abused for doing so It is sad that we are underworked and tired but we must try to be a team and work to fufill what we set out to do. For all of you that are understaffed I wish you strength and endurance, because this too will pass.
  4. by   CardiacRN
    Certainly a worthwhile topic.......The current facility I work in has MO in terms of being required to sign-up for a 12 hour on-call shift. This was managements creation due to inadequate staffing and a non-existant float pool, despite people signing up for extra shifts. Originally, it was said thi on-call person was to ONLY be used if there was a sick call, however it has turned into "the unit needs you". Now, the sick call could come from ANY 4 units, so guess what--there is always a sick call and the on-call person is always called in.

    My complaint on MO is based on principle--if I wanted to work more hours, I would regularly be working more hours, there's a reason I only work 24. Yet another case of abuse in the nursing community....

    On an end note, it is blatantly obvious Nurse Rachet is management..."the nurses don't seem to mind..." Yeah, and I'm sure you've asked......
  5. by   mcrow
    I am so glad I no longer work where I have to put in OT like I did before. Administrators should realize it is policies like MO that causes nursing burn out and high turn overs. I feel for you who are having to put in more than 40 hours a week away from your families. I know it wasn't worth it for me.
  6. by   jtfreel
    Mandatory overtime would be better tolerated, I think, if......

    I will work for you on mandatory overtime when the census is up or staffing is down, if you will guarantee me a set number of hours when staffing is UP and the CENSUS is down.

    Our nurses are opposed to mandatory overtime as a staffing strategy. We are told most of the time to limit OT to 2 to 3% and are counselled if those guidelines cannot be met. We are told to decrease staffing when nursing hours exceed the charts prediction of required staffing. Decrease voluntarily if possible, by involuntary means if necessary. This does NOT include the use of holiday time or vacation time as these are paid hours and would not achieve management's objectives of saving money. Staff are simply sent home. Months later when the acuity increases, census increases, these same nurses are mandated one or two shifts per pay period.

    In plain English, nurses take agency jobs to get enough pay to live on during the slow months and are then forced to work overtime during the busy months. There has got to be a better way.
  7. by   Nancy1
    After reviewing the posts on this topic, it sounds as if all those responding are staff nurses. Supervisors, what are you doing?
    I am in management, our facility does not have mandatory overtime and I do not have the sense that it ever will.
    Don't the supervisors or managers ever get on the units to work? Or am I living in a fantasy world?
    On Friday for my day shift I had a nurse for 4 hours. The usual staffing is 2 nurses each at 8 hours.
    My partner whose unit had it's usual staffing came over and we did what needed to be done. I guess our management training says that a manager is there to fill in when someone is not there.
    It saddens me to hear all this negative talk. Maybe if more management read what was put on these boards things would get better. I am only guessing.
    I am asking though for those of you who know that your manager is into internet, mention this board.
    Nurses need to be team players and that includes management.
    I wish all of you the best, please don't give up on nursing. We have all spent a lot of time and money to get an education to become a Professional Nurse. NA
  8. by   Krispy
    WE HAVE MO WITH THE THREAT OF GETTING "STUCK" WORKING A LOT. THE PROBLEMS THAT I SEE OCCURRING IS BEING SHORT STAFFED TO BEGIN WITH. ALSO WE ARE A CLOSED UNIT MEANING WE DO NOT FLOAT OUT TO OTHER UNUTS BUT THIS ALSO MEANS WE CAN'T GET A FLOAT RN. THE STRESS OF ALL OF THIS IS OVERWHELMING. I WORK THE NIGHT SHIFT AND THE THOUGHT OF WORKING TILL 3PM SICKENS MY STOMACH. ONE OF THE OPTIONS WE TRY IS GETTING SOMEONE TO AT LEAST COME IN AT 11AM SO AS IT BECOMES A 12 HOUR SHIFT INSTEAD OF 16. SO FAR WE'VE MANAGED BUT WITH RNS ON SICK LEAVE AND LIMITED AMOUNT OF RNS TO START, IT'S A DIFFICULT SITUATION. IT'S STILL BETTER THAN FLOATING OUT TO OTHER UNITS.
  9. by   CYBERNURSE2000
    In reply to the 20yr vet. Your words are very admirable,however,your management and your 2cents is what it's worth. I mean no disrespect,please don't misunderstand. But you speak from management's point of veiw. I would really like to here what your staff nurses are really saying. I would like to know exactly who has the final say on your so called "Implemented by staff, for the staff".
    If it really works and you do work together with your staff ,there is a nurse manager I would like for you to talk to @NYHQ NEW YORK. Boy is she a peace of work. You however do sound honest and sincere. Good luck with your mandatory and most important good luck to your overworked nurses!
    cybernurese2000!
  10. by   CYBERNURSE2000
    Nancy1 you are a rare breed, you must be from the old nursing, are you a dinosaur?
    Or are you really in a fantasy world. There was only one manager I know of that would pitch-in and take Patients in our 13 bed S.I.C.U. when short staffing was an issue. Unfortunately she is not there any longer. She got smart and moved on. HER nameis "TERRY L" and if you ever read this you are greatly missed.
    However, Nancy1, thank you for giving us regular staff nurses hope! Hope that the rare breed are out there. Ever look to come to New York. We could use some hope here!
    Thanks, thanks for not forgetting where you came from!
    cybernurse2000.


    Originally posted by Nancy1:
    After reviewing the posts on this topic, it sounds as if all those responding are staff nurses. Supervisors, what are you doing?
    I am in management, our facility does not have mandatory overtime and I do not have the sense that it ever will.
    Don't the supervisors or managers ever get on the units to work? Or am I living in a fantasy world?
    On Friday for my day shift I had a nurse for 4 hours. The usual staffing is 2 nurses each at 8 hours.
    My partner whose unit had it's usual staffing came over and we did what needed to be done. I guess our management training says that a manager is there to fill in when someone is not there.
    It saddens me to hear all this negative talk. Maybe if more management read what was put on these boards things would get better. I am only guessing.
    I am asking though for those of you who know that your manager is into internet, mention this board.
    Nurses need to be team players and that includes management.
    I wish all of you the best, please don't give up on nursing. We have all spent a lot of time and money to get an education to become a Professional Nurse. NA
  11. by   CYBERNURSE2000
    HELL NO!
    WE JUST FINISH NEGOTIATING OUR 3RD CONTRACT WITH THE MIGHTY "NEW YORK HOSPITAL MEDICAL CENTER OF QUEENS", IN NEW YORK. MANDATORY WAS THE FIRST THING ON THEIR AGENDA. WE WHERE READY TO TAKE IT TO THE STREETS ON THIS ISSUE. WE ARE PART OF 1199/SEICU AND PROUD OF IT! IT TOOK US 5 LONG MONTHS, BUT WHEN WE FINALLY SETTLED IN MARCH, WE PREVAIL! LET ME TELL YOU IT WAS WORTH BEING PART OF THAT NEGOTIATING COMMITTE. WE HAVE SOME REALLY GREAT KNOWLEDGABLE NURSES ON THE COMMITTE. WE GOT NO MANDATORY OT. THE FLEX WAS NOT A STRIKING ISSUE, BECAUSE WE DIDN'T HAVE ENOUGH PEOPLE WILLING TO GO OUT ON IT. BUT OVERALL WE GOT A FAIR AND JUST CONTRACT. MOST IMPORTANTLY NO MANDATED OVERTIME! IF YOU ARE UNION AND STILL HAVE MANDATED OT. SHAME ON YOU! FOR SETTING PRESIDENCE FOR THEM TO COME TO US AND TRY TO JAM IT DOWN OUR THROATS! IF MANAGEMENT KEPT WITH THE STATE MANDATE NURSE PAITENT RATIOS THEN STAFFING WOULDN'T BE A PROBLEM.
    ANOTHER THING IF MANAGEMENT WOULD GET OUT OF THEIR COMFORT ZONE. IE: WALKING HALLS, TAKING REPORT FROM UNITS THAT EVEN AFTER STILL DON'T KNOW WHAT'S GOING ON WITH THE UNIT THEY JUST TOOK REPORT ON, GOING TO" GET NOTHING ACCOMPLISH MEETINGS" CONFUSIN ACTIVITY WITH ACCOMPLISHMENT AND MAKING DECISIONS THAT IMPACT OUR WORK AND FAMILY LIVES . WHICHT THEY HAVE NO CLUE ON. IF THEY WOULD JUST LISTEN TO CONCERNS AND TAKE ACTION. THEN WE WOULDN'T HAVE SUCH ANNOMOSITY TOWARD WHAT THEY DO AND SAY. I KNOW THEIR JOB ISN'T EASY WITH THE STAFFING OF THE HOSPITAL,WHEN PEOPLE GET SICK AND CALL IN. BUT FOR THEM TO START TO IMPLEMENTING RULES THAT IMPACT NURSES WITH THEIR TIME OR REPRIMAND THEM FOR CALLINNG IN. THEN THESE PROBLEMS WOULDN'T EVOLVE.
    INCLOSING, IF YOU SAY NO TO MANDATED OT THEY WILL HAVE NO CHOICE BUT TO HIRE MORE NURSES. WE ARE DYING OUT THERE AND NO ONE IS LISTENING.
    OVERWORK AND UNDERPAID = BURNEDOUT. ON THAT I THINK WE CAN ALL AGREE ON. MANDATORY OVERTIME IS JUST A BANDAID TO A NATION WIDE PROBLE. CLEAN, NURTURE AND TAKE CARE OF THE WOUND (PROBLEM) AND THERE WON'T BE NO NEED FOR THE BANDAID. AND THAT'S ALL I HAVE TO SAY ABOUT THAT!
  12. by   Brian
    I just thought I would share the results from last months survey with 1722 participants:

    Q: Does your medical facility have mandatory overtime for nurses?
    A: Yes 37.90%
    No 62.10%
  13. by   OB4ME
    Whoa-CYBERNURSE2000, you have some fire in your blood re: this issue! Support to Nancy1-there are a few good ones out there. I recently took a position at community hospital. The factor that swayed me into taking the position? The day of my interview, the asst director was a little late, BECAUSE SHE WAS IN THE COUNT, TAKING PATIENTS RIGHT ALONG WITH HER STAFF NURSES! I thought, this is the place I want to work! And she's been in the count many times since, often even staying until 7 or so at night? I haven't seen many managers doing that! The director of the last place I worked-if needed (badly needed, I might add), would take the team leader pager if anything to help out. But catch her at the bedside? No-we'd likely have to close to transfers long before that would ever happen! And she wondered why several nurses were quitting as fast as she'd hire one!

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