Preventing call-ins

  1. How do you (attempt) to prevent call ins at work? It's becoming a real problem where I work (CNAs more than nurses), what is everyone out there doing to prevent that? Attendance bonuses, having to work another shift, etc
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  2. 85 Comments

  3. by   That Guy
    Actually enforcing an attendance policy. When people know they can abuse it, they will. My wife is running through this right now with the clinic she runs. the person before her let them do basically whatever they wanted.
  4. by   Jules A
    Definitely enforce the call out rules but also consider examining morale. In my experience when people won't pick up OT or are calling out in large numbers its often the result of poor working conditions. Are they burnt out?
  5. by   Brandi,RN
    That is definitely most of the problem. I just got a job as a nurse manager at a facility new to me. Our policy is that after so many call ins/write ups it's termination. I'm honestly a little scared that if we fully enforced the policy we would have to fire a good chunk of our staff and being in a smaller, rural town in Iowa we struggle to find applicants.
  6. by   Jules A
    Quote from Brandi,RN
    That is definitely most of the problem. I just got a job as a nurse manager at a facility new to me. Our policy is that after so many call ins/write ups it's termination. I'm honestly a little scared that if we fully enforced the policy we would have to fire a good chunk of our staff and being in a smaller, rural town in Iowa we struggle to find applicants.
    Approach it head on, explain that you know its going to be a culture shock but you will start enforcing the policy starting xyz date. Minimal incentives might also help with positive reinforcement. I'd make sure the policy was posted in every employee restroom and bulletin board. I'm sure there will be a couple who are wiling to push it but after one or two firings I'd bet you will see a dramatic reduction. Unless the facility is such a terrible place to work that they don't care and if thats the case you have bigger problems. Good luck.
  7. by   roser13
    I'm certain you realize that the nursing community is notorious for fostering a "work while you're sick" attitude, sometimes to the point of punitive actions taken against innocent folks. The poster that offended your sensibilities is representing those of us who call in when we're sick. Your OP doesn't discriminate between legit & non-legit call ins. For all we know, you're one of those who wishes to find a way to bribe, blackmail & coerce folks into working regardless of their state of health. In which case, SourLemon rightfully acknowledges the need for a magical healing in order to go to work, since she legitimately is sick.

    I think you owe SourLemon an apology. This is the Internet. Think before you post, particularly when you're the one that opened up the subject to all responders.
    Last edit by traumaRUs on Feb 13
  8. by   Brandi,RN
    Quote from pixierose
    Ok. As someone who is seriously not feeling well herself, I totally get where she was coming from. Nothing short of a miracle is going to get someone to work sometimes.

    You are wayyyy overreacting. And, even though I'm not getting a miracle healer here, at least I'm getting some entertainment now. You are turning a decent question into a silly attack against SourLemon. Chill.
    There is no attack on anyone. (Seriously? LOL.) If you are sick and can't come to work I get it, but this is something that only happens like once a year. And there is a difference between not feeling well and being sick. You might not feel well but you still need to go to work. There are people relying on you. 90+% of call ins are not because somebody is too sick to work anyways. I'm reaching out to a community of nurses to see what their policies and procedures are on call ins. What have they initiated to stop/prevent them, etc. So if you can't/won't answer or just want to post something pointless just move on. If you're truly nurses I don't get why you'd waste not only my time but yours.
  9. by   CanadianAbroad
    If people are allotted call ins, they will take what is entitled to them. I just called in on Friday due to being super sick with Bronchitis, but your responses, indicate you would rather me go in and infect my patients. Do you realize that call ins are more than likely due to burnout and with your attitude, you are more than likely going to see a turnover in staff. Relax there and try seeking that magical healer for that pole that seems shoved up you know where. You are perpetuating the notion of going in sick or burned out, which is extremely detrimental to your patients. Perhaps increase staffing and look at the pattern, and you might find that the institution is the problem and not the individual who has called in.
  10. by   Emergent
    My suggestion to reduce call ins is to have an excess of Per Diem employees. Make sure employees get requested time off. Show your commitment to their health and well being before starting to lower the hammer on attendance. Be sure to hire some semi retired nurses who will have a lot of availabilty. Make it easy to adjust the schedule.

    Instill loyalty by sympathizing. I hope you aren't as prickly in real life as you were here, that won't go over well.
  11. by   sallyrnrrt
    And me, as an experienced DON, I must remind you as in a new nursing mgr position, will be required to fill that call in position, when you can find no other willing

    best wishes
    Last edit by traumaRUs on Feb 13 : Reason: sp
  12. by   CoffeeRTC
    I will try and be helpful

    If this is LTC...it is just way to common. What are the reasons they are calling off? What is staffing like?

    We have been running very short. CNAs are doubling or splitting 8 hour shifts so they are working 12-16 hours 3-7 days a week. Yes...I said 7. Many are single parents or parent with a few children. They have bills, they need money. CNAs don't get paid enough as it is. These ones that sign up to work extra are making it so that we are not short staffed by filling the holes. They get burnt out very fast. Now...add in a call off for a legit reason or even something not (too much partying the night before) Cue the resentment and increased fatigue by the staff...cue the cycle of call offs.

    So...adequate staffing and a good prn call in staff.
    Generous time off or flexibility for illnesses or emergencies.
    Staff appreciation ...little things add up.
    Enforcement of discipline process when there are call offs.
  13. by   amoLucia
    Wow! Brandi, you need to lighten up! I think you missed the tongue-in-cheek attempt at humor by PPs. I think we others all 'got the drift'.

    Your staff's attendance is truly a problem for you, but jumping all over the posters here will not win you any support or assistance. Esp for a new member.

    Get to know us before you start 'biting off heads'. By and large, this is a helpful group.

    My suggestion for your dilemma is to have a one-on-one with ALL your staff re attendance. Compliment the good staff by expressing your appreciation. For the absenteeism abusers, review their records with them and discuss your expectations.

    Then if the problem persists, start the progressive disciplinary process, esp if your staff is union. A few write-ups will put the dead-beat offenders on notice. My guess is that the worst offenders are prob the most problematic in other areas, so you will be starting the necessary paper trail.

    And, by the way, good luck, in your new position. (Seriously!)
  14. by   needlesmcgeeRN
    It may seem...trivial or whatever...but I would start by examining the workplace. I think when you have a positive and supportive work environment, your staff have more buy-in. When staff feel appreciated, more buy-in. More buy-in, more dedication to their position. Of course, this is just my experience. I worked at a LTCF many years ago - there was a high level of employee appreciation (employee of the month, attendance incentives, etc.). We had low turn-over, we had dedicated staff who all worked to provide the best care for our residents.

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