Charge Nurses - page 2

I'm doing a very unofficial, unscientific survey to find out if charge nurses in ICUs take patients routinely. Our ICU is a general ICU and our charge nurses have historically NOT taken patients... Read More

  1. by   nurseyperson
    In our small ICU in Kansas, the hospital got rid of our charge nurses who were paid a differential for being in charge and now they are called PCCs...Patient Care Coordinators who do NOT get any extra pay!! Of course the PCCs do the same job as they always did, charge nurse duties. They also take a full patient load as well as dealing with all the problems, staffing, assignments, etc. We have a nursing shortage and lots of new nurses and sometimes the PCC is the only experienced nurse in the unit. The hospital got to save money and the nurses were cheated.
    When I travelled and worked in a larger CCU in Dallas, the charge nurses did not take patients unless absolutely necessary (short staffed with new admits). I think a lot of it has to do with the size of the unit and the total responsibility of the charge nurses.

    [This message has been edited by nurseyperson (edited March 09, 1999).]
  2. by   barton
    I know some of you on this BB from "General Discussion--Topics: Reply to barton, etc..," and I know that some of you are already greatly contributing to our efforts re: LICENSED nurses at the bedside and increasing nurse/patient ratios for better patient care.

    SO.........I wanted to invite all of you to join us.

    The Administrator of the BB I mentioned, (bshort), is planning on using some of our input in NURSE-ZINE MAGAZINE!!


    We have ABC's 20/20 interested!!!!

    Please read, post, and contribute to our e-mails/letters to legislators, the ANA, etc.!



  3. by   Sophie
    I am California RN that has the title PCC- Patient Care Coordinator. This is the charge position, but I take a full assignment, and sometimes more because I am a wimp about delegating ( thus I take extra work). We make 5% more (for me that's about .7o/hr.) I work in 20 bed ICU/CCU and the days are notoriously MUCH worse than nights. I would rather take an assignment on nights and be in charge, if it meant that the day PCC could do charge and NOT take an assignment. Sophie
  4. by   jamie
    I am an RN who works in an ICU in a hospital with 120 beds, located in Western North Carolina. Our 7a-7p charge nurses do not take patients, because they also serve as unit secretaries. Our 7p-7a charge nurse also serve as ward secretaries, but because the "higher-ups" feel that nights are slower than days (at times this is true, but when a night goes bad it is terrible)so the night charge nurse takes an assignment of up to 2 pt.'s, usually the one's with the lowest acuity.
  5. by   nilepoc
    I am one of two permanent charges on nights for my unit. We do not regularly take patients. I would say that as the shortage gets worse though it may change. I am in a teaching institution in Abuquerque NM.
  6. by   Hayden
    In my ICU (8 beds) in Sydney Australia, the team leader takes a patient on the morning shift (when the nurse manager is available), but on the pm and night shift the team leader does not have a patient.
  7. by   ArenRN
    We have a charge nurse responsable for MICU and SICU at the same time. There is no extra pay for the charge nurse duty.
    There are times when the charge nurse has to take patients
    ( if someone calls in sick, or someone is needed to float to the floors)
    The charge nurse duty is assigned to some of the nurses, on a rotational basis. It is a very stressful role when patient assignment is added. Some of us have requested in writing not to be assigned as Charge Nurse unless we get paid extra to do it.
    Those of us that made the request are no longer assigned to Charge Nurse duty. The other ones continue to perform the duties and complain about it.
    I work in a VA Med center in Florida.
    Last edit by ArenRN on May 2, '02
  8. by   fedupnurse
    New Jersey-combined MICU/CCU. We have 24 beds, 12 on each side. When a manager is on they do not take an assignment unless all of us have 3. If a staff nurse is in charge we generally take an assignment rather than have a colleague or two be stuck with 3. Staff also tends to back up the staff, even with an assignment, than the managers do. I think our managers should have an assignment.
    Good luck with your poll!
  9. by   PRFICURN
    I work in the ICU of a small community hospital in rural Western Pennsylvania. I too am a charge nurse and we are expected to take a full patient load. With the nursing shortage hitting us hard the entire situation has been at times unsafe. Please see and respond to my posting about Staffing in an ICU.

  10. by   toronto rn
    In the unit I work in (ccu/micu) the PCC's generally don't have a pt. assignment unless we are short staffed. PCCs are paid an extra $1.40/hr. RN's who are in charge if there is no PCC schedualed get an extra $.70/ hr. again usually no pt. assignment.
  11. by   susanmary
    Connecticut, 800+ bed hospital, no differential, charge RN in ICU does not usually get assignment -- varies with sick calls, etc. No ICU for me thanks -- they're sick enough on the floors.

    Good thoughts to all of you.
  12. by   Zee_RN
    18-bed ICU in a community hospital. We have six full-time charge nurses and they do NOT take a patient assignment (which I think is the only safe way to do charge nurse duties). I think it's just terrible that so many places have charge nurses with a full patient assignment! Charge nurses earn $1.00/hr more than staff nurses. Fortunately, our ICU is quite well staffed right now; we're up to full staff and even have a couple RN's waiting for openings in the ICU. But even when we were down staff, the charge did NOT take patients...sometimes charge nurses came in extra as staff nurses but there was still a dedicated charge nurse without a patient assignment at the helm.
  13. by   HazelLPN
    I work in a 15 bed unit and our charge nurse usually takes no assignment. All of our experienced RNs rotate the charge role. They are responsible for staffing, assiignments, carry the code beeper and respond to codes if needed, assist other staff member, and cover patients that are cared for by an LPN. Occasionally if staffing is bad they will take half a patient assignments (such as 1 1:2, 2 1:3 etc).