Agency Nursing Problems


I've been on staff with a nursing agency for the past two years. Until this summer, I was just doing per diem clinic work for them, since I was going to school full-time. Last month, they offered me a part-time 5-week home care position, which I accepted. It was due to begin next week.

Two weeks ago, they called me to ask if I'd cover another client for 3 days this week. I accepted. It went fine, though it was a draining assignment. Yesterday afternoon, after I finished my third and final shift with the client, the agency called and asked me if I wanted to work with this client full-time for the next 6 weeks, because they don't have anyone lined up for the client. I was very surprised at this, since the client's mother (it's a pediatric patient) told me that new nurses would be starting next week; she had been told that there was coverage. I reminded the agency person that I had already committed to another assignment with them, and she said it didn't matter, because that client was easier to cover, and someone else could do it. I told her I'd be willing to cover the client part-time, but couldn't do five days a week (honestly, it's because this assignment takes a lot of energy).

Well, today the agency called me back and said if I want to cover 2-3 days per week, that's fine, but then they'll reassign my original case to someone else, because they don't want to split that one between two nurses.

I'm frustrated with this whole situation. It's not fair to the client's mother, that she was told there was coverage when there wasn't. And why should I have an assignment taken away from me because they couldn't fulfill a commitment? I'm also mad at the agency because they made a mistake with my last paycheck. Plus, for both cases, they gave me inaccurate info about the client's; I didn't know the actual ages, genders until I met them.

Is this stuff pretty common to staffing agencies, or is this one more disorganized than most?

Specializes in NICU, ICU, PICU, Academia. Has 46 years experience.

Welcome to the wonderful world of private duty nursing- peds edition.

This is so common, I almost didn't need to finish reading. Which sucks for the client AND the nurse.

Specializes in Emergency Nursing, Pediatrics. Has 11 years experience.

Nope they're all the same.

JustBeachyNurse, LPN

1 Article; 13,952 Posts

Specializes in Complex pedi to LTC/SA & now a manager. Has 13 years experience.

Sounds more like private duty nursing than staffing agency.

This is common with many agencies

Has 33 years experience.

You proved you could handle the the "draining" assignment. Everybody else is drained too.

The agency is shuffling nurses to get the difficult assignment covered.

I have had those assignments. I did one week, did not go back. You should refuses the 2-3 days .. it will turn into 5 and you will be passed over for the better assignments.

If the agency doesn't use you any more.. their loss. There are hundreds of agencies that want your services and will treat you better.


554 Posts

Specializes in nurseline,med surg, PD. Has 50+ years experience.

Agencies are not run by nurses, they are run by young adults who don't have a clue. Their goal is to provide staffing coverage, by hook or by crook. They will lie to achieve their goals.


30 Posts

Thanks for your feedback. Yesterday, I chatted with a nurse friend of mine who's done home care for years, and she basically said the same thing: agencies have a hard time finding and keeping staff to cover assignments, so inconsistencies and disorder are pretty much par for the course. I have just accepted a full-time job that will begin at the end of next month, so I know that I won't be taking any more assignments from the agency after this one. So, I'm going just cover the case part-time and deal with it. Thank you for your perspective.


16 Posts

These r typical agency stuff