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Reduced to part time and then ghosted

Hospice   (707 Views 9 Comments)
by Hospice RNCM Hospice RNCM (Member) Member

991 Profile Views; 34 Posts

I am a hospice RN Case Manager who was up till recently, working fulltime for a Hospice provider in Texas.  I have been with this company for 3 years, have been a stellar performer, and have never had a disciplinary action taken against me.     Several weeks ago, I was notified that two different clients had called the office and asked that I not return to them.   This is actually something that happens quite frequently to hospice field staff, so I am not the only one this ever happened to.   I should say that one of them was a personal care home run by a lady who claimed to be a RN, but sure did not act like one.   My patient was dying, and she refused to give pain meds when they were due or out him on O2, saying "Honey I have been doing this for longer than you, I know when someone needs to be on O2, he is satting at 95% so he doesn't need it.   This despite he was already labored-breathing andf gurgling.   I reported all this to my supervisor, expressing my concern that my patient as not being taken care of properly.   After I was told not to return there, no nurse went to see that patient and he passed 3 days later.   

The other client that said they didn't want me was another personal care home where I had two patients.   One had an episode of hypotension, I had to go immediately to see that patient.    I then had to follow up the next day and the day following that was the regular sched visits for both patients.    The PCH told the office I was making too many visits and I was in the home too long and was doing nothing but documenting.   

When I was called into the office I was told that too many clients in such a short time was grounds to reduce me to part-time from fulltime.   I was not offered any opportunity to defend myself, all the GM told me was "go ahead and submit a rebuttal if you like, but it's not going to change anything because these are our referral sources, and we have to protect them because they are our bread and butter."  

After I was reduced to part-time, I was offered NO work for the rest of that week and the following week, either.   I still had my electronic device during that time and was able to receive emails.   Whenever I saw an email from a nurse asking for help with taking an oncall spot or help completing visits I would volunteer but the office would decline to use me.    I even offered to take the weekday oncall spots so the other Case Managers would not have to do week day oncall, but again I was refused.      Each day I would contact my supervisor, and request visits,but wastold that an visits assigned to me had to be approved by the manager, and she was not approving any.   So basically I was in limbo the whole time.   

 

Of course I saw the writing on the wall, and started job searching right away, but it wasx awkward when I would be asked if I was still working for them and I would have to answer "yes but part-timer only."  And the reply would be, "wow is that because of census?" and I would have to hem and haw my way out of it to find an acceptable answer.

I have found a new job and will start soon, but my question is this.    I have been told that I was treated very unfair, and for them to just summarily dismiss me down to part-time and then offer no work is just wrong, and I am owed at least fulltime pay for that period.   I even consulted a labor attorney who told me that I "probably have a weak case" but because of the short time I was basically in a no-work status, it would be useless to take them to court because the fee for the attorney would be higher than the back pay I would hope to get.    But I am told that I can file a complaint with Texas Workforce.    What are your thoughts?  Is there any validity in my complaint or is this just another of those things an employer can do to you and get away with it.   

One other thought.   I still have some communications with former co-workers at that company and they tell me that most of the field staff are very upset over what happened to me and are asking "what's going to happen to me the next time I get told not to go back to someone's house?  are they going to bust me down to part-time and then ghost me?"      Makes you wonder.  

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34 Posts; 991 Profile Views

well things came to a head this morning at my old job...one of the LVN's had the same thing happen to her as happened to me, summarily reduced down to part-time, despite being a hard worker and a stellar performer.   In her case she was complaining for weeks that her case load was taking her way far out of her area, and repeatedly asked for help getting her load reduced, and that her wwork was requiring her to stay out till 8-9 pm most nights.   In addition, on teo occasions lately she had to see 8 patients in a regular day, then do oncall, and did not finish till 4:30 in the morning, and was told she had to work a full day the following day.   because of this heavy schedule, she was having trouble completing her notes during her visits, and would have to finish them later once she got home.   

this morning she got called in by the administrator to ask about her notes. She explained in detail her troubles, and how she has repeatedly asked for help but to no avail.   Their response-- well we are just going to have to put you down to part-time.   She could not believe what she was hearing.   She told them she thought she was going to finally get some help, but instead this??  You want me to quit is that it?   They tried to say it wasn't like that, but she told them, oh bull@!%$, you are doing to me exactly what you did to (my name) , and now I am going to have to look for a new job.  Thanks for nothing!      

Shortly after this, one of the RN's marched into the administrator's office and gave her 2 week notice, telling them she was sick and tired of how staff is treated, and you had better wake up and smell the coffee, because all your field staff have one foot out the door.     

I foresee somebody in management getting canned soon.  

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Kaisu has 2 years experience.

144 Posts; 1,888 Profile Views

I know it doesn't feel like that now, but this is a good thing that has happened to you.  A company that complains that you have made too many visits is a red flag.  As a professional, we make the visits the patient needs.

It's hard to look for another job when you already have one, despite there being problems.  It reminds of the story of the frog in a pan of hot water.  If you put one in when the water is hot, it jumps out.  Put it in when the water is cool and slowly turn up the heat and it boils to death.

Working for an agency that supports their staff is a wonderful thing, and in the work we do, crucial to us.

I see great success and happiness in your future.  This agency will get what karma has coming to them.   Good luck.

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34 Posts; 991 Profile Views

Thk you for your response....just to clarify, they didn't can me just because I was making too many visits, in fact the company wants us to make lots of visits, in fact the more visits the better.   There is a quota of visits per discipline.   RN's have to make 27 visits a week, and LVN's have to make 32 visits.   They canned me just because two diferent clients said they didn't want me, and instead of asking me what were the issues (and there were issues with both) decided to automatically take their side and decide that I wasd automatically wrong.   

What I am trying to find out is do I have a case for wrongful treatment, in that I was reduced to part-time and then offerred no work, thus forcing me to quit.   

 

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Kaisu has 2 years experience.

144 Posts; 1,888 Profile Views

We are not attorneys...  to find out if you have a legal case you have to ask a lawyer.

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34 Posts; 991 Profile Views

Oh I knew that...I just wanted to hear from anybody who may have been down that road before, and what the result was.   

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3 Followers; 36,918 Posts; 97,861 Profile Views

What you are describing is common for many. Par for the course. You are good enough as long as you are good enough, and then they forget you ever existed. I have not worked for my last employer for a year now.  I am now full time at what used to be my second job. If I were interested in stirring the pot, I would call and bug the first employer but I have decided when I want a second job, I will just move on to the next agency. This is not the first time an employing agency has forgot my phone number, and it may not be the last. I just do what my acquaintances and I have always done, move on down the road. If we sued for wrongful termination every time an agency stopped providing us work, we would be permanently blacklisted after the first lawsuit. Want to get their attention? Apply for unemployment and see what happens. Bet they will either find work for you or you will find them fighting the unemployment tooth and nail. Just get another job. It is not worth the aggravation, time, and money to fight a bad employer in this case.  You stand to hurt yourself more in the long run.

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34 Posts; 991 Profile Views

I have another job now. and I did file for unemployment and got it too.  They didn't forget my nbr, they just wanted me to quit.   I asked them several times if I could fill in on weekday oncall, or help another nurse who said she needed help and each time was turned down.   they knew what they were doing.      

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4 Followers; 1,480 Posts; 7,347 Profile Views

I went through a situation very similar to this in home care some 20 years ago. I was there 5 years, no problems, and then suddenly 2 different patients complained about me in a month. These same patients then complained about every RN that went to their home, but that didn't matter. The spotlight was on me.

Among other things, I was accused of harming patients. Things like my glucometer stick apparently hurt more than the last nurse.

Witch hunt, pure and simple.

I went through a very, very difficult time establishing a work history, because that job was most of my resume.

That was my motivation to pursue my NP, which I have written about elsewhere.

Nursing is simply not a good job. You are not valued or respected. You will be thrown under the bus, especially in any situation where it is your word against the patient's.

 

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