Interventional Radiology Nurse Specialty Pay

Updated | Posted
by TPark412 TPark412 (New) New Nurse

Specializes in Procedural nurse. Has 12 years experience.

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Hello I have worked as a IR nurse for over 10 years and have always received specialty pay working at private hospitals. How do I propose for specialty pay at the VA hospital? We fall under periop but along with PACU, OR and Cath lab. However, only OR and Cath lab get specialty pay. How do I propose this to leadership?

dianah, ASN

Specializes in Cath Lab/Radiology. Has 47 years experience. 9 Articles; 3,421 Posts

What department is over the IR nurses?  Nursing?

What is the history of the IR department?  How long have nurses worked there?  Have the nurses ever approached admin. to request specialty pay?  If so, what happened?  If it was turned down, why? 

Bottom line, what is the criteria for nurses receiving specialty pay, and how can you show that the IR nurses meet that criteria?  This may take a few months, but persevere. 

Good luck!

TPark412

TPark412

Specializes in Procedural nurse. Has 12 years experience. 6 Posts

Hello Diana. Thanks for responding. We fall under periop which consists of the OR, Cath-lab, IR and PACU. OR and cath lab receive specialty pay. We have 10 RN’s and 2 LVN’s. 5 nurses work 10hr shifts which I just helped get approved and all the others work 5 8hr shifts. We have some nurses who have been here as long as 11years and others ranging from 1-5 yrs. We asked about Specialty pay during a morning meeting last year but we were told by are manager we don’t qualify with little explanation why. Are manager is not a subject matter expert in IR. We only take call on weekends which I find very odd. If there is a emergency during the week a house supervisor with no experience covers or anesthesia. Or care is delayed. You have to live close enough to respond to emergencies within an hour. We are required to have ACLS, BLS. Most of us have a critical care background. Nurses work in different modalities and sub-specialties such as ultrasound, MRI, CT, Neuro, MSK and radiation oncology. We collaborate and work with same day surgery, PACU, anesthesia Rad techs, radiologist, dialysis, pharmacy and etc. We rotate and patient care coordination weekly (scheduling and screening). Our nurses are first responders to RRT, contrast reactions and high risk procedures like bleeds which sometimes need rapid blood transfusion.  We need a broad skill set for patients at various acuity levels for both Inpatients and outpatients. Nurses monitor and provide sedation. Depending on experience 6-12 weeks of orientation is provided to learn the different modalities and procedures. 

dianah, ASN

Specializes in Cath Lab/Radiology. Has 47 years experience. 9 Articles; 3,421 Posts

Again, find out the criteria for specialty pay (maybe talk with the Cath Lab and OR nurses or managers about what hoops they jumped through to get it) and list how your team meets that criteria.  From your description of the in-department assignments, you are all cross-trained so it would apply for all RNs, at least.  Not sure about the LVNs...  Make your case there. 

What would be the deciding body, as to whether you are eligible?

Is your manager an RN?  If not, who reviews your Annual Review?

 

TPark412

TPark412

Specializes in Procedural nurse. Has 12 years experience. 6 Posts

I’m hearing that specialty pay was given to units with poor staffing, which to me is unacceptable. 

dianah, ASN

Specializes in Cath Lab/Radiology. Has 47 years experience. 9 Articles; 3,421 Posts

1 hour ago, TPark412 said:

I’m hearing that specialty pay was given to units with poor staffing, which to me is unacceptable. 

Agree!!   There MUST be some criteria for specialty pay!  If a unit is short-staffed, then offer incentive pay.  Specialty pay should meet specific criteria, in order to qualify.

Afraid you will need to do some digging here.  Do the ICU RNs get specialty pay?

TPark412

TPark412

Specializes in Procedural nurse. Has 12 years experience. 6 Posts

Yes ICU gets specialty pay. To my knowledge their providing specialty pay to areas of high turnover and that issue has not improved. So your ultimately throwing away more money instead of providing the nurses the pay who deserve it and meet the criteria. 

Epidural

Epidural, BSN, RN

110 Posts

Every hospital I have worked in is a little different. Most give specialty pay to OR nurses. Most also give specialty pay to Cardiac Cath Lab nurses. Some give specialty pay to procedural unit nurses, and not ICU nurses. Some give specialty pay to Labor & Delivery  nurses. A large percentage give "certification" differentials or bonuses.

I recommend that you keep submitting requests for this pay. We recently got our "overtime pay" increased along with a huge baseline pay increase, but both were long overdue. It took years of appeals. The CV crisis did seem to make a difference; many nurses took early retirement.

dianah, ASN

Specializes in Cath Lab/Radiology. Has 47 years experience. 9 Articles; 3,421 Posts

The squeaky wheel gets the grease (especially when a strong case is made for it). 😉

JuJuBeBe

JuJuBeBe

Specializes in New RN grad. 4 Posts

Are you a member of the local American Federation of Government employees? Can you find a manual describing what issues have been negotiated before at your hospital? You won't get what you deserve. You will get what you negotiate. 

OUxPhys

OUxPhys, BSN, RN

Specializes in Cardiology. Has 7 years experience. 1,198 Posts

I work at a VA cath lab and I am not aware of specialty pay. How much is it at your VA?

TPark412

TPark412

Specializes in Procedural nurse. Has 12 years experience. 6 Posts

I will find out and get back to you. We had a meeting addressing the criteria and we’re told OR and cath lab get it due to staff shortage and difficulty recruiting nurses. I still don’t feel it’s right that other specialty units are excluded for that reason.