I work for a small (120 bed) hospital in central Florida. We are among the lowest-paid acute care facilities in the state. My hosptial has been offering a $10,000. sign on bonus since last summer for new hires with a recruitment bonus to employees who recommend a new hire. (Anybody wanna move to Florida and be my friend?) The hospital is now well staffed on day and afternoon shifts: enough so that the day shift nurses are actually on a call-off schedule--and this is the middle of our busy season! Sounds like the sign-on bonus thing worked, huh?
Here's the big slap in the face: Three muckety-mucks (that's the medical term) took a week's all-expenses-paid trip to the UK to recruit nurses. They hired 11 nurses with no experience/licensure in the USA, paid them each $10,000. sign on bonus, and is paying their way here, housing them and supporting them until they are licensed and available to actually begin. (So far they kicked one "experienced" midwife/RN from abroad out of OB because she was "unsafe.")
What about the rest of us who have actually been there, are loyal employees and know what the heck we're doing? Well, the president of my facility was overheard in a meeting (yes, this is gossip but from a reasonbly reliable source <wry smile> ) saying that he doesn't plan to keep a nurse for more than 2 years so that he doesn't have to pay more than base wages. Since I've been there 3.5 years, I'm a dinosaur!!
How do you feel about recruiting from overseas? How would you treat the recruits if you were in this situation and working with them (now, think beyond the first knee-jerk-must-be-nice-to-everybody answer and think about how you'd really feel). What steps might you take to let an administration (that obviously doesn't give a flying fig about its employees) know how you feel? Anybody else out there in my boat?
FYI: we have a nursing school
capable of graduating 24 LPNs and 24 RNs each year (with a first time NCLEX pass rate of nearly 100%) 2 miles away from the hospital.