Forced to come into work on day off

Nurses General Nursing



A new scheduling policy is about to take affect and I wanted to check to see if its right/legal. So, in our ICU we are now going to be required to work a full 12 hour shift (over our 36) on one of our days off every 2 months. We will not know in advance what day this will be, and thus they are calling it an "on call day." Essentially we will be called out of the blue and forced to come to work, every 2 months.

How on earth is this acceptable, my days off of work are my days off?!

So my questions are...

How is this legal?

This was not mentioned in my job description, unless the famous "and other duties as assigned" applies.

How do they do this if you are out of town on that day??

How does someone plan babysitting or elder care or another job or school????

Why can't they plan these every 2 month days that you are on-call so you can plan your life accordingly?

VERY odd circumstances......

Specializes in Trauma Surgical ICU.

I agree with above also but the question that came to mind is WHY are they doing this?

I agree... very odd. Like Otessa said, if you don't know in advance, what would happen if you dropped your car off for repairs, had an important appointment, or already had a few drinks at dinner? Do they expect you to just stay at home and be ready to go to work on every day off? Not acceptable.

And good question in the previous post - WHY are they doing this? At the very least, why can't the overtime shift be scheduled in advance?

Specializes in LTC, Acute Care.

I don't know if it's legal, but I'm sure it isn't right. It's awfully silly of them to think you all are waiting by the phone on your days off to see if your number in the "on-call" lottery was drawn. This policy couldn't last, could it?

Specializes in Med/Surg,, SICU, Burn ICU, ER.

Look into your state BON and see if mandatory overtime is addressed. If it isn't allowed-then no, they cannot make you come in....and like everyone else, I'd be asking why and for me personnally I wouldn't want to work for an ICU that does that.

Also, we'll be staffing another department (cvicu) instead of our own (msicu).

Can't provide any explanation other than no one wants to work in our cvicu, there have been two ft positions posted for months.

Specializes in Gerontology, nursing education.
Also, we'll be staffing another department (cvicu) instead of our own (msicu).

Can't provide any explanation other than no one wants to work in our cvicu, there have been two ft positions posted for months.

This seems like a very bizarre move on the part of management. You'd think that with new grads (and experienced nurses) crying for jobs, the facility would be better off to hire two nurses.

I'm in south carolina if anyone knows off hand about the mandatory overtime.

Typically if an on call schedule is used, you know what day you are "on call" so you can plan on being available and keep your fingers crossed. Are you sure you understand their plan? One on call day in 2 months is not such a burden, if it is equitable.

Specializes in Nurse Scientist-Research.

The unit where I work requires 1 on-call shift per month. It is not classified the same as "mandatory overtime" so it somehow escapes the no mandatory overtime laws in my State.

They need to give you some sort of notice. Particularly if they try to call somewhere for a night shift. "I'm sorry, but how long do I have to wait after I've finished my beer?". Or, "So do I bring my kids to the hospital with me or should I just go ahead and turn them over to the State?". So are you guys going to be required to carry cell phones are do you have to sit at home beside your phone all day every day? I just wouldn't answer any unknown calls, "Sorry, I've been having reception issues, lost my phone that day, kid hid my phone, dog peed on my phone, I was driving through a tunnel, riding an elevator "death grip" killed my I-Phone, oh and I don't know how to retrieve my messages". I really didn't know how to retrieve the messages from my cell phone for the first 3 years I had that service.

Also, I don't know if it's law but generally hospitals have to pay you for your on-call hours, it's usually a pittance like $2/hr but it is something. They don't want to pay the entire staff 48hrs on-call pay every week even at $2/hr.

I bet they are going to come back and tell you guys that they want you to be on-call one or two shifts a month which is no fun, but I seriously doubt they are putting your entire staff either at work or available 7 days/week. I'm not saying this mean, I'm just saying, take a deep breath and get some clarification.

One of the local hospitals in my town has a mandatory overtime policy...The nurses must work one additional shift per month, but I believe the nurses get to pick their own shift and schedule themselves, so they know way in advance when they will be working. I would look into the details of the policy. If you are potentially "on call" on all your days off, that seems majorly wrong.

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