8hr vs. 12hr work days - page 3

by sjm30 | 20,356 Views | 50 Comments

I cant help but wonder if the nursing profession would benefit from lowering the number of hours worked in a day. I know that most nurses enjoy the extra days off by working 3 twelve hour shifts a week but those last few hours... Read More


  1. 3
    I enjoy working my 12 hr shifts because I am able to run errands or take a mini vacations without using up my PTOs.
  2. 2
    I prefer 8's... I feel like 12's eat up the entire day! But if I were full-time, I might have a different opinion. My facility offers both 8's and 12's, plus a variety of FTE's. I'm .6 evenings and am really happy about that. I feel like 5 8's a week would destroy my love for nursing and quality of life and thankfully at this point we don't need that money. Even .6 I make a lot more money than my previous job. Evenings aren't for everyone but I enjoy them... less craziness +shift differential = good times. Of course, with family considerations I'm sure this will all change. That's why there are so many different options.
    joanna73 and Fiona59 like this.
  3. 5
    I would leave nursing if I had to work 8 hours/5 days a week.
    hikernurse, Aurora77, sharpeimom, and 2 others like this.
  4. 3
    If they got rid of my 12 hour shifts I would leave immediatly. I might not leave nursing but I would certainly leave bedside care. Having to work 5 days in a row would not be healthy for me and I would burn out. To decompress and get refershed I need time to become completly absorbed and involved in somthing else and 12 hour shifts allows that.
    Five 8 hour shifts a week has not been shown to be safer than three 12 hour shifts. I also understand that what works for me is not what works for everybody else. I wouldn't work in a hospital that didn't have both 12 and 8 hour shifts available depending on what worked for each nurse. Refusing to be flexable is a sign of a lack of respect for nurses from managment. In my hospital (non-Magnet)we have nurses who work 8's, 12's, two 12's and two 8's a week and a variety of other scheduals. Not every new nurse is going to get what works best for them right away but stick around a little while and you will.
  5. 1
    I've done both, and for me, as soon as I switch from one to the other, I miss what I just left. What's nice about 8s is that you have time in the day to actually do something if you want to. It's nice to have hours to unwind and forget about work. Only having 2 days off is a huge downfall though. When I worked 12s, the last 4 hours dragged every single shift. I really dreaded going in to work, knowing I had 12 hours to go, but I really loved getting 4 days off a week. That kind of break makes you feel like you really are getting away. With only two days, the weekend is over before you know it. I still haven't figured out which one I like best, but I've also only done 8s on day shift and 12s on evening shift so they're very different experiences.
    Fiona59 likes this.
  6. 1
    I think the reason that many of my peer group (I'm 57) move away from the bedside is -at least in part- because 12 hour shifts are so grueling.
    Yes, you work more days with 8's BUT on my 12 hour nights, all I do is work, sleep and commute. If I could work eights, I could still make a run to the grocery, go to Bible study, have a meal with my family or whatnot and still work my shift.
    I seriously dislike 12 hour shifts. My ideal would be 3-11p.
    Fiona59 likes this.
  7. 2
    I would hate to work five 8s. I realize most of the work world does this, but nursing is different. I NEED those three days away from the hospital per week to decompress and think about life outside of nursing. Maybe a nursing office job would be OK with those hours, but in a hospital? No way.
    hikernurse and joanna73 like this.
  8. 5
    Well, most of the world does not work evenings or nights, which is what 2/3 of the nurses have to work, for 8 hour shifts.
    hikernurse, Fiona59, wooh, and 2 others like this.
  9. 1
    well as nurses we are alread very used to long hours or shift work, i believe alot of nurses would like to have the option to work
    12 hr day leaving them for an extra day or two off in the week or fortnight for leasure time etc.
    hikernurse likes this.
  10. 1
    My work recently changed from 12 hour shifts to eight hour shifts . I hate it . Now we are expected to do the same amount of work in less time. Since we have started everyone has been having to stay late to catch up. Two days does not feel like enough time to recover. It seems like errors have increased since we made the change.
    hikernurse likes this.


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