Units with Least Amounts of Call Offs?

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    I am in a contract with a hospital that pays for my education in return for a 3 year contract, and I have a week to put in my top three requests for units. I loved the OR but the two times I was there the nurses were all talking about seeking supplemental employment elsewhere because of how frequent the call offs were. In your experience, which units in the acute care setting are most and least likely to have frequent call offs? Any advice is greatly appreciated! Thanks.
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  3. 10 Comments so far...

  4. 0
    I think it is hospital specific. I have never seen OR nurses called off, or day surgery. GI is another 'for sure' in the hospitals I have worked. However, I have a friend that works in a facility where day surgery can take call and once the cases are done in GI they are done for the day. If only 2 cases, then they are finished. Makes it hard on the paycheck.

    I have worked med/surg for years and again, hospital specific. Some hospitals have very large units, not an over abundance of staffing and rarely get called off. Where I work now is a smaller hospital and if we lose 8 pt's, that takes a toll on our census. Totally unlike the a larger facility where I worked. Call offs were far and few between because many nurses worked PT not FT.
    HTH
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    I think the ED will have less low census days. And even if you're called off, you'll quickly get called back in because it goes from 0 to 60 in 3 seconds. Call back pay
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    Might try telemetry or cardiac step down. They always jump. If you will float, you can about always work.
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    ER, the way to go. They can never predict the patient census. It's a major reason I left the ICU.
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    Definitely ER.
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    IMO, ER is probably the only unit that you can be certain won't have as many call-offs, since a lot of underinsured people like to use the ER as their primary care provider. Otherwise, you're at the mercy of the hospital's census, and there's simply no way to tell what units will be popular which week.
  10. 0
    As others have said, very hospital specific. At my workplace, there are never call-offs (they are not allowed to) but instead we get floated to other units.
  11. 1
    Ask which units have the highest turnover. Chances are they will often be working short staffed rather than over staffed. And chances are this is because there is something about the environment that drives people away, so....ymmv.
    workingharder likes this.
  12. 0
    Our ER is having a TON of call-offs lately due to decreased volumes. Their folks are cross-training all over the place to work per diem. So it's not a universal unit in which there's no low census.

    We have been taking quite a bit of low census hours in the PACU, but we tend to make up for it by taking call (the good kind where you go in and get paid well, or at least make $4/hr for sitting at home) and working OT when we're actually busy (it's pretty hard not to get your FTE's worth of hours in a pay period). Even our OR nurses have been getting cut, but generally just one or two per slow. They have to have staff to cover the rooms just in case.

    PCU or something like that would probably be a good bet if you were willing and able to float to tele and med-surg units. Basically you'll want to be as versatile as possible if your primary goal is to not get sent home.

    Personally I'd rather burn up some vacation hours or take some unpaid hours than work in a unit I find less desirable otherwise.


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