I think per diem nurses could offer the same continuity of care if given the chance. I personally have never worked as a per diem nurse but, the ones that I know seem to be constantly pulled from floor to floor and from unit to unit. I have talked to nurses who have been pulled 4 times in one shift. Imagine that! I don't know how they do it.
They deserve a big pat on the back. In our unit we greatly appreciate the assistance the per diem nurse can offer us.
I am a per diem R.N. I think the core staff has to be given the credit for the continuity of care, just because of the way we are scheduled. That's not to say we can't be with the same patient throughout their stay, considering the short stays. But the nature of per diem is to fill in.
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It would be difficult for a per diem to give continuity of care, especially if she is truly per diem IE only there once a week or so. We shouldnt be expecting that of them. They are there to fill a hole in staffing, and I for one am glad to see them come. It makes the difference b/w my pt load. 5 with vs 7-8 without. ( Just aside at our hospital the per diem staff dont make any more than we do. So there is no monitary incentive to be per diem less the freedom to work when she wants. If per diem paid more I would be one too)