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ADON On-Call, Med-carts, and Comp Time

LTC Directors   (5,956 Views 11 Comments)
by bmcqueen bmcqueen (New) New

781 Profile Views; 4 Posts

I started my nursing career as an LPN for a year while I finished my associates RN 6 years ago. Since then, I have worked in one LTC facility for 3 years, the hospital setting as a tele nurse and travel tele nurse for 4 years. I have been given what I think is a great opportunity as an ADON at a LTC facility, even though I don't have a lot of experience, but I have completed my Bachelor's and am in a Masters program now. My question is about this company's apparent policies regarding on-call, med-carts, and comp time.

I am salaried, so after 40 hours I don't get paid. I expect to need to work 45-50 hrs a week just because of the added responsibility, and that's fine. However, I found out today (three weeks into my new job) that every 4 weekends (from Friday at 3p to Monday at 7a), I am expected to be on-call to handle staffing. That is, I am to take the portable staffing home with me, receive all call-offs, attempt to find coverage for those call-offs, assess whether people need to be called off, and if I am unable to find coverage for nurses, come in and work a med-cart. I was also told that the week prior to that weekend (Monday through that Friday) that I am on-call in the event of a staffing issue to take a cart for whatever shift that can't be filled. I wouldn't necessarily have too much of a problem with that, but this company does not have a comp time policy. So, if I have to come in over the weekend, I am still expected to work my 40-50 hrs during the week.

Obviously, this does not sound right to me, but as I said, I don't have much LTC experience. Is this normal or is this company expecting too much? How should I address it with my DON? I really like my job, but I don't want to sacrifice my family and school to the company for what would end up being paid less than a floor nurse for the hours I am working.

Thanks for any advice or input anyone could give me.

Beth

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BrandonLPN has 5 years experience as a LPN.

3,358 Posts; 35,364 Profile Views

A RN with years of experience in both LTC and acute care is way more qualified than most ADONs. Many LTC facilities place LPNs with a year or less in this position.

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Nascar nurse has 25 years experience as a ASN, RN and specializes in LTC & Hospice.

2,213 Posts; 32,071 Profile Views

I have never worked in a facility with an official comp time policy, and most will tell you they don't have one, but on the other hand I've never had anyone give me a problem with just saying "Hey, I got stuck here all day Saturday so I'll be taking Friday off".

I learned early on that I will not be taken advantage of when I am on salary. I don't expect to work just 40 hours but I'm not about to go much above 50 hours routinely without a little give and take on their part too.

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amoLucia specializes in LTC.

5,192 Posts; 45,978 Profile Views

Have the discussion with your DON. If you're lucky, there may not be much of a need for you to be called in too often.

On the other hand, there may be a problem there. Sadly, this issue should have been addressed during your interview process as it does have impact on your school and other time committments. If this was NOT EVER discussed then, it would sound fishy to me, as if there is a chronic staffing problem at your place (that they wanted to hide).

Your position most likely will require SOME extra time beyond 40 hrs. But they shouldn't be sticking it to you. Proceed cautiously. Some places will pay lip service to comp flexibility, but in reality, it won't exist.

Don't get suckered; obviously you have some reservations and concerns now. Good luck.

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244 Posts; 6,413 Profile Views

You can come work for me! Gheesh! I think you need to have a discussion with your DNS. I can't imagine how they think they are going to retain you long term. No, I wouldn't do that!

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CapeCodMermaid has 30 years experience as a RN and specializes in Gerontology, Med surg, Home Health.

1 Follower; 6,072 Posts; 60,243 Profile Views

If my on call nurse has to go in and work a cart,I always let them take a day off and we don't have a comp time policy. It just makes sense to me to try to be reasonable with people.

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4 Posts; 781 Profile Views

Thanks for the input. Since Corporate insisted on immediate education for our nurses over last weekend (we failed to clear a tag on g-tube feedings - one nurse was just scared and made a mistake while the other nurse was way off - we have retrained her, but have still taken her off the schedule because of other issues), I have put 75 hours in since last Wednesday. Again, I don't mind putting in extra to get important things done, but they also have not said anything about me having a day off this week. In general, this facility really isn't that bad off, so I think I really just need to talk to them and establish firm boundaries.

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11 Posts; 861 Profile Views

Have to take call q6 weeks, Mon-Sun. Get 8 hours comp time(can trade in for hours on check) Since our floor nurses take call also, have to work if they are already scheduled to work during a call in. Get 8 hours comp for shifts I have to work when Im not on call.

As for salary, no way, wouldnt have taken position. Work way to many hours for that. I do 10 hours each day at the least. But I love my job !

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NurseGuyBri has 6 years experience and specializes in LTC, Education, Management, QAPI.

308 Posts; 8,073 Profile Views

I will say this. What they're asking you to do is too much, but it's not unheard of. In my facility, the ADON is on call every 4th weekend. I (DON) take mon-fri call and help find coverage. In some event that I can't get it, i will come in. Remember though that this is very uncommon and many people frown on this. Granted, too, I've never had to come in and work a cart, but I will should the need arise. My 2 unit managers, ADON, and wound care nurse take rotating call, so they have only 1 weekend every 4 weeks. It works out well. If the ADON has to come in, unfortunately he gets no comp time because the job really does require 50-60 hours a week. The best I do is take him out to lunch. It doesnt sound like much, but our facility has good relationships in mgmt- we work well with each other and we just DO what needs done. It's not expected, it's offered. I think they are asking too much to always be on call, you'll pull all your hair out..

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10 Posts; 968 Profile Views

We were down a unit manager for almost 2 months. The other unit manager and I (ADON) have been rotating call 7 days every other week. When we have to work an off shift (3-11/11-7) we get a day off. We just hired a unit manager so it will be every 3 weeks after she finishes orientation. On top of that we are trying to clear resurvey and have been working 12 hour days 6 days a week for 3 weeks!!!

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NurseGuyBri has 6 years experience and specializes in LTC, Education, Management, QAPI.

308 Posts; 8,073 Profile Views

Gulf Coast- that is always hard. I have never understood why it is so difficult for nurses in this way. I hope that they get someone good for you and soon!

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