On-call criteria for Surgery nurses

  1. We are, as a department, looking to revamp our on-call policy. We were recently told that our current policy is illegal. Our current policy was at 59.5 years of age, you didn't have to take call if you chose not to. Evidently after years of this being in place, we were told it was illegal. Many people who have been here years were looking forward to this, but now it is unavailable. How do any of you out there base your on call policy? Years of service, plus age? Seniorty? Any ideas? How are your policies written?
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  2. 10 Comments

  3. by   traumaRUs
    Moved to OR Nursing
  4. by   WhoDatWhoDare
    At every facility I've been to (3 thus far) the call list is open at a specific time/date, and first come first served.

    At one facility though, to keep some people from always getting to it first, the group was broken up into 2 groups and each group would take turns being first.
  5. by   jeckrn
    Did they say why it was illegal?
  6. by   lux libertas
    Quote from jeckrn
    Did they say why it was illegal?
    It seems like an ageism/discrimination issue to me


    On my unit it's first come, first serve and then the remaining call shifts are randomized among staff.
  7. by   Rose_Queen
    Quote from jeckrn
    Did they say why it was illegal?
    Flagged for age discrimination, most likely. I've seen other members comment the same thing.

    At my facility, no one is exempt from call. Doesn't mean they actually spend time on call- many are able to find coverage from other staff (usually involving a "gift" of a bottle of wine or 6 pack of beer). Another local facility exempts from call after 35 years of service- that avoids the whole age discrimination thing because it isn't tied to age, even though those with 35 years of service are going to be older.
  8. by   jeckrn
    I would ask to see the law were they are getting that information. I have heard of age discrimination but not reversed age discrimination. Just think there are some jobs which have mandatory retirement ages.
  9. by   TTaylor123
    Quote from jeckrn
    Did they say why it was illegal?
    Because it was based on age. At the time it was based on retirement age, so you can see this has been in effect for years. We have talked to HR about having a seniority based system instead but were told that that too implied age. Just wondering if others have a call system based on seniority
  10. by   TTaylor123
    Also wondering if anyone has a seniority PLUS age policy when determining a exempt from call policy?
  11. by   jeckrn
    Ask to see what law they are looking at.
  12. by   SQueenRN
    We all have to take turns being on call. Some people will offer to take your call because they need money.

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