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Calling out sick. How much notice?

Posted

Specializes in hospice, ortho,clinical review. Has 5 years experience.

Since I'm still in orientation, I'm not leaving anyone short staffed.

I haven't been sick like this in over a year. I've learned when I'm sick, I'm not pushing it...it only goes to something worse and takes that much longer. I used to practically need to be on a stretcher before calling off, but that's ridiculous...still working on the guilt part but getting there.

Unless a miracle happens between now and then there's no way I can make it. I'm scheduled to go in tomorrow at 7am. Do I call tonight sometime or wait until 6am tomorrow?

Edited by Joe V

Sun0408, ASN, RN

Specializes in Trauma Surgical ICU. Has 4 years experience.

I would call out tonight. Orientation or not, it is not a good idea to call out with such short notice. Don't feel guilty, when you're sick, you're sick...

Fiona59

Has 18 years experience.

Call out now.

I try and give at least one shift's notice.

I will admit to calling in at 06 for a day shift once but let's face it, we've all had the morning when we can't get out of the bathroom....

Kitty Hawk, ADN, RN

Specializes in hospice, ortho,clinical review. Has 5 years experience.

Thank you.

I wasn't sure if doing it tonight or now would cause them to think how I know what i'm going to feel like tomorrow morning. :rolleyes:

My last place I worked I called out once at 9am for a 3pm start shift. I really thought I could push it and make it, but then common sense took over. When I called the sect. to the DON she asked me how did I know I wouldn't feel better in a few hours! I thought it was best to give her a few hours to find someone, go figure.

My previous career, you'd have to actually describe the symptoms!:eek: Wasn't good enough to say you were sick.

OCNRN63, RN

Specializes in Oncology; medical specialty website.

You may as well call out now if you know for a fact you won't make it tomorrow.

We're told to give as much notice as possible. I feel bad when it has to be a middle of the night call, but you can't help waking up sick. When I know for a fact that I'm not going to be in the next day (eg, diahorrea or vomitting that needs a 48 hour "free" period) I call the day before. They can then get someone to cover.

NurseLoveJoy88, ASN, RN

Specializes in LTC. Has 6 years experience.

I called out today at 315 am but I was told I had to call back at 445 to call out. IDK.

SlightlyMental_RN

Specializes in chemical dependency detox/psych.

I always try to give them as much notice as possible--For example, when I had food poisoning, I called off about 18 hours before my shift start time, as I knew that there was no way in heck I would have been up to going to work the next day...I was actually out of commission for 6 days with that one.

I think it may depend of where you work and If they have a policy for calling in. In a small facility I called in earlier , ( then later) but in this one large facilitly , they really don't want you to call in too early, I think 3 hours before the shift begins. It may also depend on what is wrong, If it is say- a headache and you call in too early they may think, why not take a couple tylenol and rest a few hours, but if you have bronchitis or something like that.. you know you won't be feeling good in even 8 hours. I don't think it is anyone's business really -- but they will write what you say is wrong-where I work, and it is on your eval. word for word. quote/ unquote. strange. also if you miss weekends you must make them up ( dr's excuse or not) BUT if you call in on say a Monday, no- you don't have to make that up.

Kitty Hawk, ADN, RN

Specializes in hospice, ortho,clinical review. Has 5 years experience.

cecilsgirl said:
I think it may depend of where you work and If they have a policy for calling in. In a small facility I called in earlier , ( then later) but in this one large facilitly , they really don't want you to call in too early, I think 3 hours before the shift begins. It may also depend on what is wrong, If it is say- a headache and you call in too early they may think, why not take a couple tylenol and rest a few hours, but if you have bronchitis or something like that.. you know you won't be feeling good in even 8 hours. I don't think it is anyone's business really -- but they will write what you say is wrong-where I work, and it is on your eval. word for word. quote/ unquote. strange. also if you miss weekends you must make them up ( dr's excuse or not) BUT if you call in on say a Monday, no- you don't have to make that up.

Wow that's nuts. So you'd be expected to wake up at 4am to call out for 7am.

Well it's done, I called in and they were actually very nice about it. Lot's of awww's and hope you feel better. So maybe I work for a decent place concerning calling out.

I worked last Thur through hellacious cramps (they're getting hideous the older I get. If I'm home I'm rolled in a ball w/ a heating pad) but I slapped a therma care patch on my ab and took some aleve and got through it. I'm already really low on iron from my anemia, I'm working on it but it's only been a month. So when I'm down it takes that's much longer. Fortunately I really haven't been sick that much. Other than feeling usual exhaustion.

My bad head colds will turn into bronchitis fast if I don't take care of myself. I learned this the hard way...twice now. When I was in nursing school, an instructor actually had to to send me home early from lecture b/c she could see how bad I looked, I ended up on antibiotics and still 1 day later was out walking around in -15 degree weather doing a community assessment that was a mandatory thing for that semester.

Another time I pushed through a bad head cold thinking it was no big deal, until one day I started to realize I'm getting winded going from driveway to house. By the time I saw the MD, she said my lungs were so polluted I was in danger of going to sleep and not waking up!:eek: It was then I learned about walking pneumonia.

I already have that deep cough that sounds like a lung is coming up and other assorted s/s And this job is extremely physical, even more so than others I had. Pulling ted hose on 200 + lb people can wear anyone out!

Even if I knew my job really well I mostly likely would still call out for the above reasons. But since I'm still learning and need to be sharp. Nope, I know my limitations.

It just sucks though. Really came out of no where. I was fine Friday, no hint this was coming on. Usually you get some warning, feeling dizzy or tingle in the throat. But nothing, I woke up Saturday feeling like I swallowed sandpaper and got hit by a truck.

I've worked for employers where the handbook says two hours and where it says four hours. And I've been asked to state symptoms or to call back later or just to come in anyway. Do what you think is best under the circumstances. It only makes sense to give as much notice as possible but that is not always the way an early call is perceived from the other end. Don't let the response add to your discomfort.

OCNRN63, RN

Specializes in Oncology; medical specialty website.

I think it's inappropriate that you have to state your symptoms. If you're sick, you're sick. It's nobody's business what it is that ails you. Unless you have some sort of contagious disease that has to be reported to the health department, it's your business. I mean, really, why should you have to tell your manager you have disabling menstrual cramps/diarrhea/lousy head cold? What's she going to say, "Prove it"?

Elvish, BSN, DNP, RN, NP

Specializes in Community, OB, Nursery.

Where I am, one has to call out for dayshift, by 0500, evenings by 0900, 12-hour nights (19-07) by 1300, and 8hr nights (23-07) by 1700. I broke that rule a few days ago when I was in an accident that involved flipping my truck on the highway while driving into work. I had to call in at 1800 for the whole night, since I was taking a ride with the nice EMS people to get a trauma workup at the ED.

Mostly, it's decent to call in as soon as you know you're going to be out. Good to see that you did, and hope you feel better soon.

We are required to call in two hours before the shift starts. I always call off as soon as I don't think I'll be able to go. If it's really early, I go ahead and call off but let them know I will call back in later if I am feeling better and can make it in.

I once called off around noon for an 11-7 shift and the supervisor said they were short and wondered if after taking meds and resting if I might possibly feel up to working, I told her I doubted it and to find someone else but would call back when I woke up to let her know how I was feeling. I slept through my alarm and didn't get up till 9:20, when I called in there was a different supervisor on and she was furious I was calling off so late. I explained that I had already called off to the previous supervisor and was calling in as a courtesy but apparently my call off wasn't passed on. Since then, I won't call in to tell them I'm still not feeling better but I will call in if it turns out I'll be able to work after all.

RNMeg

Specializes in NeuroICU/SICU/MICU.

My facility requires at least 2 hours' notice (unless it's something like a car accident on the way in to work), but they prefer as much notice as possible. I'm glad this thread came up, I'm also on orientation and feeling sick. I'm going to go in tonight, though, because I haven't had a fever - just sinus congestion. One extra-strength 12-hour Sudafed, and I'll be all set :D

OttawaRPN

Specializes in acute care med/surg, LTC, orthopedics. Has 5 years experience.

Many facilities keep track of certain symptoms for infection control purposes, ie) N/V/D or cough, temp, etc... otherwise it's none of their bleeping business.

Besides... every single nurse has, at some point in their career, called in sick without actually being sick, and I wouldn't believe anyone who tried to tell me otherwise.

OCNRN63, RN

Specializes in Oncology; medical specialty website.

OttawaRPN said:
Many facilities keep track of certain symptoms for infection control purposes, ie) N/V/D or cough, temp, etc... otherwise it's none of their bleeping business.

Besides... every single nurse has, at some point in their career, called in sick without actually being sick, and I wouldn't believe anyone who tried to tell me otherwise.

Personally, I think that's just a line they use. What are they really going to do with that information? It's not like they start treating staff prophylactically if they see a trend in a particular illness. IMO, it's used as a way to intimidate staff into not calling in/supervisors being Nosey Parkers. "I'm sick" should suffice.

We have a minimum of 2 hours to call off. This allows for people to be found to cover.

Even though you're in orientation, you're expected to be there. You're also suppose to be held to the standards set forth for others in your position. Call in with at least two hours, or if you know you're not going to be well in the AM, just call off that night. I've done this before when I know I'm not going to make it, and I just explain, "I want you to know now so that you at least have the ability to call people if they'd be interested in filling in.

... Obv. the last part you wouldn't need since you're still in the orientation gig, but it's still being considerate