Per Diem/ Casual/Agency Nursing Question

  1. For those of you who do Agency or Per Diem nursing, do you like it better than working for an institution and having a set # of hours? Do you tend to get cancelled quite a bit? Also, with Agency nursing are you offered benefits at all? I've heard that some agencies are starting to offer benefits. The reason I ask is one of the per diem nurses at the hospital I work at told me how much they make, although it is sans benefits. I thought that sounds like a pretty good option for working moms who want to spend more time with the kids but still bring home some decent $$$.
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    About rachel h

    Joined: Nov '01; Posts: 189; Likes: 12
    med/surg RN- mostly med


  3. by   melissa24
    I used to work per diem in a NICU...never got cancelled...they were calling me in all the time to work!

    I now do per diem home visits. The agency is small, hence I don't get very many cases, but it is just enough for me, as I homeschool my children. It is enough to keep me current and bring in some extra money. I am considering picking up another agency job during the summer when they are off from school.

    No, I do not get any benefits. My husband's job provides all those. If you find an agency with benefits, or you are married and do not need them, it is definitely worth looking into.
  4. by   sjoe
    No benefits in exchange for more $$$ and lots more freedom and independence. I rarely got cancelled with agencies and never with per diem.

    Some agencies are starting to offer benefits, but usually only for those who work a certain number of hours (so you lose that choice).

    No free lunches.
  5. by   SmilingBluEyes
    I work perdiem in two places. I like it because I can name my schedule. Usually offered more work than I can take. My husband is military so we have medical/dental etc. The pay differential is 15%. Not bad. NOT being used up and spit out by management is the best part of being perdiem status, IMO. I hope I get to work this way indefinately. It works out great for me.
  6. by   roxannekkb
    Except for my first year, I worked my entire nursing career per diem and agency. I was making twice the money, in some cases, then the staff nurses were making. The freedom to work when I wanted, to be free of unit politics, and to make more money were most important to me. I was able to buy benefits at one per diem job. Most agencies also offered benefits. Plus, health benefits are also available through organizations. I no longer work in a hospital, but I never ever considered returning to staff.

    I got cancelled sometimes, but if one place cancelled me, another was ready to snatch me up. When I lived in LA, I could call my agency anytime day or night, and UCLA always needed a nurse. I hated going there, but shifts were always available. Put it this way, there was always work, and I was usually the one turning it down. Not the other way around.