About to call it quits before I start!

  1. Well, my first assignment that I'm supposed to start the last week of January is off to a rough start. The company will not answer my questions. They will not guarentee me blocked shifts which was what I verbally based my decision to travel on and now I cannot get it in writing. I'm traveling from my home town, 140 miles each way. I want to go down, work 3 shifts, and come home for a few days. I told them that if I can't get them in a row, I cannot do it. It is 4 weeks away and this hospital thinks I'm coming to work and I do not have anything in writing about blocked shifts. I cannot afford 2 on, 1 off, 1 on, 3 off...I would be driving all the time, not to mention a huge waste of natural resources. The company says they will get back to me but I have not heard anything. I also will not take that test and have let them know this also. Have I burned a bridge by backing out 4 weeks before I'm to start? I just do not know what to do about this. I still have not signed anything.
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  2. 14 Comments

  3. by   Mulan
    What test?
  4. by   lorster
    The PBDS test that many hospitals are requiring travelers to take and if they fail, they are out of a job on the spot. I would rather avoid this whole hassle.
  5. by   Mulan
    If the hospital won't hire travelers if they don't pass the test, and you refuse to take the test, you can't work for that hospital anyway.

    What about contacting the hospital directly and see what they have to say about it?
  6. by   lorster
    I was told not to call the hospital, that all communication has to go through the travel nurse company. I just want to find out so I can decline and they can move on and find another nurse that can do it. I feel like I'm putting the hospital in a bad situation by verbally saying yes, then not getting what I need in writing, and the travel company not getting back to me so I can get this handled. I know the holidays have slowed people down and may be I just need to be patient. I don't want to burn the hospital but I am not going to give 13 weeks of my time to a company that says one thing and does another. I am taking a 6 dollar an hour cut in pay to travel so I'm really starting to question why I'm leaving my own community to make less money. I figured it would be a nice change but am quickly finding the politics are everywhere you go. Maybe I'll just stay home.
  7. by   Mulan
    Some places are probably taking today as a holiday since the holiday was Sunday and Monday.

    I think I'd call them tomorrow and just tell them if you can't give it to me in writing today then I have to say that I can't do the job.

    Good luck.
  8. by   LadyNASDAQ
    Quote from lorster
    Well, my first assignment that I'm supposed to start the last week of January is off to a rough start. The company will not answer my questions. They will not guarentee me blocked shifts which was what I verbally based my decision to travel on and now I cannot get it in writing. I'm traveling from my home town, 140 miles each way. I want to go down, work 3 shifts, and come home for a few days. I told them that if I can't get them in a row, I cannot do it. It is 4 weeks away and this hospital thinks I'm coming to work and I do not have anything in writing about blocked shifts. I cannot afford 2 on, 1 off, 1 on, 3 off...I would be driving all the time, not to mention a huge waste of natural resources. The company says they will get back to me but I have not heard anything. I also will not take that test and have let them know this also. Have I burned a bridge by backing out 4 weeks before I'm to start? I just do not know what to do about this. I still have not signed anything.
    Honestly, being a travel nurse would not be in your best interest at all. The schedule you want is not a negotiable thing because when you travel, you are truly at the mercy of the hospital's peer scheduler as they call it in Calif. That's the person who makes out the schedule.

    You are in a pickle so let me tell you what to do. First off, travel isn't like it used to be. You have to understand that many of us have been doing this for years and the hospitals play games with you. They also have the right to alter your schedule, send you hone half way thru a day and ask you to come back the next day all in the eyes of saving $$$.

    Trust me,the best way to work is local agency. If the hospital will give you the days you want in a contract, terrific. If not, work per diem and work the way you want to. As a Traveler, if you cancel your contract or the hospital does, you will be out a lot of money because most agencies will ask you for 30 days of rent plus fees so beware. They can sue you in small claims court if you don't pay them and this is what's going on right now.
  9. by   lorster
    When I spoke to the spokeswoman, which I don't believe was the manager of the unit I would be working, she stated the departments are self schedule and she didn't think that working three in a row would be a problem. I cannot seem to get that in writing. So, I really do not think this is going to work out. I just do not want to cause them a problem and back out while they still have plenty of time to find someone. As far as perdiem, I'm not sure there are any agencies like this around there. This is a very rural area, but I will check into it. Thank you for your advice.
  10. by   bagladyrn
    "I don't think it will be a problem" is a long way from guaranteeing 3 shifts in a row. Most hospitals will not guarantee this, as you are there to fill their needs and the preferences of their regular staff will come first. This is just a fact of life as a traveler. Your company cannot give you a contract guaranteeing this if the hospital has not agreed to it, in writing, in their contract with the agency.
    As for the PBDS, it is a pain to take, but again, your company cannot waive it - it is up to the facility. Your only choice there is to not go to a facility which uses this test.
  11. by   suzanne4
    Unless it is writing, it is not guaranteed.
    And as stated above, when a traveller, you are there to help the until when they are short, unfortunately, not to work around your schedule. If it works out to that, then great. But that should not be the priority in selecting an assignment. If you do, it will turn to bite you on the butt, and you will not have a good time of it at all.

    Commuting back and forth like that will not help you in tax perks in the long run, other than putting miles on your car, etc. If you are staying a few nights in that town, then the agency is prividing housing there for you. Highly recommend that you look at doing some pre diem work from an agency in your area, where you will get more money and not put so many miles on your car, etc. That would be better for you. And if it is further, and you need to stay at a motel, then you can easily do it, especially if a few shidts are involved. Much more cost effective for you.
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    Once a nurse has been submitted by an agency, it is improper to try to go there on their own or thru another agency. Most hospitals will refuse to deal with that nurse immediately, as it can cause conflicts with the existing contract that they have with the original agency.
  12. by   maritimegirl
    Regarding the PBDS, if you go to pantravelers.org, there's a link there that will give you a list of the hospitals that require you to do the test.
  13. by   cvryder
    You can try to get the block scheduling written into your contract, but good luck! I did work a block schedule on my last assignment...straight weekends, days...but that was because nobody else wanted to work those. Going back to nights on my next assignment, and the weekend option is not an option there as she has plenty of those, but I will ask to have all my shifts together if possible during a week. Sometimes it depends on who does the scheduling. If the unit is short-handed enough you can pretty much get what you want, but the tradeoff is that you run yourself to death when you work.
  14. by   amy0123
    Quote from lorster
    The PBDS test that many hospitals are requiring travelers to take and if they fail, they are out of a job on the spot. I would rather avoid this whole hassle.

    I recently took the PBDS exam. Requires much studing and the best way to prepare is to take your notebook, draw a 3 columns and write a common diagnosis (CHF, MI, PE, DKA, Hypoglycemia, post op Pain, CVA), intervention and rationale. Just got to step into Barnes and Noble with a little notepad and read through a few NCLEX books or nursing textbooks if needed.

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