8hr vs. 12hr work days - page 2

I cant help but wonder if the nursing profession would benefit from lowering the number of hours worked in a day. I know that most nurses enjoy the extra days off by working 3 twelve hour shifts a... Read More

  1. by   dienne
    I work night shift and there is no way I would work 5 days a week!!!!! I would have no life and I would always be tired with not enough time to recover between shifts.
    At least for night shift I think 3 12's are ideal, especially if you can group them together and have 4 days off
  2. by   whisperingsage
    High doses of B complex- like 4 of the B100's. Also, magnesium, B12, biotin, all help0 with feet and circulation, Arginine. My workplace is 60 miles away, I couldn't take care of home if I spent 5 days a week down there. I have animals and a farm. Two days of 12's are good for me.
  3. by   DizzyLizzyNurse
    I worked 8 hour shifts 5 nights a week while in school and I HATED it. I was one of those rare birds who liked 3-11. Now that I'm 12 hour shifts, I LOVE working the 3 nights a week. Working 5 days a week I felt like I was always at work. Plus I like being able to see things through on my shift. I'd imagine less mistakes would happen when you have the same person for 12 hours.
  4. by   joanna73
    We had this debate at work recently. Most people were not in favour of 8 hour shifts. You have less time off, and 8 hour shifts are still tiring. Also, I'd much rather work an hour of overtime on a 12 hour shift, than an hour of overtime on 8 hours, knowing I'm back the next 4 days in a row.
  5. by   petethecanuck
    I love my 12 hr shifts and don't think I could ever return to an 8 hr workday. Especially if it's Mon - Fri 7-3.

    The hours I do in 3 shifts of 12's takes someone 4.5 shifts doing 8's. I'll enjoy my extra 1.5 days off thank you very much.
  6. by   Patti_RN
    Not only are the hours of the work day a consideration, but the commuting time, parking expense, fuel or other transportation, and even prep time to go to work are all hours and expenses that should be factored in.

    We all have to get up, shower, dress, drive (or walk or take transportation) to work, park, get there at least a few minutes early as a 'buffer', and return home at the end of the day. Depending on traffic and distance it could take an hour or two 'door to door' each way. So, that additional time easily adds 10 hours a week to the time burden of work. If you work three 12's it's only 6 hours a week... Same should be considered for wear-and-tear on your car, you fuel expenses, and your parking expenses.
  7. by   cantdoit
    I think 8s are bad for hospital RNs because of weekends and nights. Working 5 days in a week would be terrible with this type of schedule.

    that said, I'm really tired of 12s. The day is soooo long. and when you work more than one day in a row, all you have time for is to come home and sleep and then go right back to work.
  8. by   May2013
    I enjoy working my 12 hr shifts because I am able to run errands or take a mini vacations without using up my PTOs.
  9. by   siRNita
    I prefer 8's... I feel like 12's eat up the entire day! But if I were full-time, I might have a different opinion. My facility offers both 8's and 12's, plus a variety of FTE's. I'm .6 evenings and am really happy about that. I feel like 5 8's a week would destroy my love for nursing and quality of life and thankfully at this point we don't need that money. Even .6 I make a lot more money than my previous job. Evenings aren't for everyone but I enjoy them... less craziness +shift differential = good times. Of course, with family considerations I'm sure this will all change. That's why there are so many different options.
  10. by   champagnesupeRNova
    I would leave nursing if I had to work 8 hours/5 days a week.
  11. by   PMFB-RN
    If they got rid of my 12 hour shifts I would leave immediatly. I might not leave nursing but I would certainly leave bedside care. Having to work 5 days in a row would not be healthy for me and I would burn out. To decompress and get refershed I need time to become completly absorbed and involved in somthing else and 12 hour shifts allows that.
    Five 8 hour shifts a week has not been shown to be safer than three 12 hour shifts. I also understand that what works for me is not what works for everybody else. I wouldn't work in a hospital that didn't have both 12 and 8 hour shifts available depending on what worked for each nurse. Refusing to be flexable is a sign of a lack of respect for nurses from managment. In my hospital (non-Magnet)we have nurses who work 8's, 12's, two 12's and two 8's a week and a variety of other scheduals. Not every new nurse is going to get what works best for them right away but stick around a little while and you will.
  12. by   lockheart678
    I've done both, and for me, as soon as I switch from one to the other, I miss what I just left. What's nice about 8s is that you have time in the day to actually do something if you want to. It's nice to have hours to unwind and forget about work. Only having 2 days off is a huge downfall though. When I worked 12s, the last 4 hours dragged every single shift. I really dreaded going in to work, knowing I had 12 hours to go, but I really loved getting 4 days off a week. That kind of break makes you feel like you really are getting away. With only two days, the weekend is over before you know it. I still haven't figured out which one I like best, but I've also only done 8s on day shift and 12s on evening shift so they're very different experiences.
  13. by   meanmaryjean
    I think the reason that many of my peer group (I'm 57) move away from the bedside is -at least in part- because 12 hour shifts are so grueling.
    Yes, you work more days with 8's BUT on my 12 hour nights, all I do is work, sleep and commute. If I could work eights, I could still make a run to the grocery, go to Bible study, have a meal with my family or whatnot and still work my shift.
    I seriously dislike 12 hour shifts. My ideal would be 3-11p.