8 hr vs 12 hr shift

  1. At the LTC where I work, they went to 12 hour shifts for nurses only. All but 1 hate it. We voted overwhelmingly to go back to 8 hour shifts. The administrator said no, will not happen d/t cost cutting measures. We don't have general 2nd shift staffing problem. Most of the nursing staff are willing to do ANYTHING to return to 8's. For many of us, we are being worked 4-5 12s a week, so apparently OT isn't the issue. We miss our families and are exhausted, especially night shifters. And when there is a call in, it becomes a nightmare to fill, someone is coerced to work a 16-18 hr shift, then drive home. Any suggestions? All facilities in our area have went 12 hr for nursing staff, so looking for another job isn't a viable answer. Any helpful answers are welcome and most appreciated!
  2. 9 Comments

  3. by   Sam J.
    An ancient history of 12 hour shifts:

    Baylor shifts started decades ago. Worked 2-12s on the weekends, were paid for 40 hours with full benefits, and weekday people had weekends off, so they rarely called off. Nobody called off on the weekends, because it would cost you TWENTY hours of pay per day. Back then in the old days of the real nursing shortage it made perfect sense- and everything was peachy and keen. If you worked two hellish 12s, no big deal- you had five days to recover. Then, the nursing shortage started to not be, and they eliminated benefits for Baylor plans. Then they cut Baylor pay to 32 hours, then nurses started to say 'hell, no'. Now, to work 12s is a hellish chaos of random recovery time, and when a nurse calls off- a scramble happens to replace them, and nurses just cannot function safely on such a schedule- more so with ever increasing commute times.

    True story.
  4. by   SE_BSN_RN
    Sounds like a tough call. I used to work Baylor shifts, only mine were 16's. This was so I could go to school during the week. I loved working only 2 days and having 5 off. Now, they've completely done away with them, citing cost issues. 4-5 12's a week is tough, but holy cow, what a pay check!!! Is that the only reason given by your admin? Is it really cost cutting, or a bigger bonus in his pocket? Maybe someone should start a petition for those that want to go back to 8's and present it to admin/HR and corporate. Other than that, I don't know. Sounds like you are all pretty stuck.
  5. by   ERnurz
    The facility I work in has everyone doing 12s; every other weekend and two days during the week. There are several schools located nearby pumping out new RNs every May, so there aren't too many units short of nurses. When a call in happens, we have a list of occasionals that will pick up a shift here and there. I love only working three days a week. I can't imagine why your facility would have you all working 4-5 days a week, they must be horribly understaffed!!
  6. by   RNinIN
    They choose not to hire more help d/t benefits. Easier to pay OT
  7. by   Sam J.
    Quote from nurse.lisa1968
    They choose not to hire more help d/t benefits. Easier to pay OT

    Interesting how some places have a zero tolerance for OT, while others mandate it? They are always trying to figure out how to nickel and dime the nurses, but can't seem to find just the right way to do that. Speaking of benefits, that might have been true 20-30 years ago when benefits were significant (as in worth several dollars per hour), not so much today when lots of people can't even afford the health insurance that is offered, there are fewer paid holidays, zero pensions, ever decreasing retirement contributions, etc. Also interesting is that staff that don't opt for the insurance (that will change with ACA) aren't/weren't given a pay increase in exchange for not taking the insurance, which would seem to save an employer money- but I've been told many times they pay a group premium based on number of employees, regardless of how many of those employees don't opt in? Sounds like kooky and creative accounting, to me.
  8. by   BuckyBadgerRN
    In my facility, the rehab unit nurses work 12 hour shifts, on the other side (conventional NH and Memory care), those each do 8 hour shifts. Seems to work for us. I'm a rehab RN and love only working 3 days a week
  9. by   RNinIN
    If it were only 3 days a week. Always 4 or 5
  10. by   HGTVrn33
    Are you being forced to work 4-5 days or do the haggle you to come in and pick up an extra shift?
  11. by   RNinIN
    We are being scheduled that (4-5 nights), then coerced ( voluntarily, wink wink) to stay over if someone calls in.