I currently work in a Psychiatric facility here in Los angeles. I was hired as a mental health worker April 2006 and currently STILL work as one. I acquired my LVN license august 2006 and still haven't landed a job as a Psych nurse in the facility i work in. I've asked our D.O.N. and H/R numerous types if they can upgrade my status so i can get the correct pay using my license. However, all those times i was shut down. Now recently i had an interview at another facility and was told by the interviewer that it's illegal for my currently facility to keep me as a Mental Health worker while actually being a licensed nurse. SHe said that they're liable for having me work as a MHW when in fact i have more responsibilities as a liensed nurse. Is that fact true? What else can i do to have my current facility to upgrade? To be honest with you guys i dig Psych and wouldn't want to leave my current job due to the fact that my coworkers are extremely cool and the whole experience in psych is just too damn interesting to me. Am i being too lax? Also, i was also informed that if they do happen to FINALLY upgrade my status, they would have to do "retroactive" pay. Meaning, since august 2006 when i received my license, they would have to go back and pay me ALL the money that i worked for as a nurse instead of a Mental health worker. Please, i need more information regarding this subject. I feel like i've been used this whole time and just recently realized it. I've been on this forum before and know that everyone on this site is very helpful and extremely informative. THANKS!!
Dec 29, '06
I, too, have worked as an LVN medication nurse at a psychiatric hospital and think that psych nursing is very interesting and exciting.
However, I am going to be blunt with you. Your current employer does not have any regards for you or your monetary situation if they still have not upgraded your pay rate and status after 4 months. In addition, you state that you have continually reminded them to upgrade your employment status, but to no avail.
I know you do not wish to leave the interesting sphere of psych nursing, but it is time to find an employer who will pay you whatever you are worth. I would put the pressure on your current employer by telling them that you will resign if your status is not upgraded by the end of the week.
There are too many other employers and facilities that will value your license and contributions.