Talk to me about your unit's On Call system...
How large is your NICU?
Do you use On Call? Is it mandatory? Voluntary?
How is your On Call used?
What seems to satisfy staff most?
Thanks... looking to revamp our Call system for our 90 bed (soon to be 140 bed) unit!
103 bed Level IV
No on call, but if staffing is needed there will be a text message asking for volunteers. If no volunteers, then a second text is sent offering $10/hr incentive
It seems to work under normal short staffing. There has been the extreme max capacity where we ended up pulling nurses from other floors including the volunteers.
35 bed level III unit. Everyone except for the charge nurses has to sign up for one night call shift in every six-week schedule. If the on-call person is not called in for their shift, they are on-call at home from 1900-0300 unless told otherwise. If that person gets called in, they are paid time and a half.
If that one call person is not enough, they will send out a text for more help. We also frequently use float nurses from pediatrics and postpartum (we have to float to them as well when needed). Lately, we have been busy and short-staffed, so management has also made everyone (even the charge nurses) sign up for an extra call shift (days or nights). I can't say I love working call shifts, but I also know that it sucks to work short-staffed when we don't have a call person.
Small unit chiming in - Our call requirements are based on core staffing. Once the schedule is drafted, any holes are placed out to PRN staff first. If there are still holes after this (leaves, vacations etc) then the hours go to mandatory call. Day shift and night shift sign up separately (it rotates who gets to choose first) and are given a required amount by 4 hour blocks - it's time and a half if you're called in. Some months we have no requirement, some months it might be 24 hours.
If it's just a sudden need we place an automated call to staff requesting help. A $10 differential is offered if same day. If desperate they'll offer call pay. In general our unit is very good about picking up if staff is needed.
36 bed Level III. No mandatory call but it has be "threatened". If call help is needed a text message is sent out via our scheduling system. If no response, we then make direct phone calls. Unfortunately, there is not anymore incentive right now other than time and a half if you come in and stand by pay as well if you sign up ahead of time. We also get a lot of help from our Pediatric floor.
The reason mandatory call has not been implemented is many of the staff say they will leave if it started.
60 bed Level III
No mandatory call. All voluntary. When short staffed and nobody wants to work extra we use float team or agency nurses.
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