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Required to work as PCA instead of being cancelled!

Has this happened to anyone? Went in to the hospital I was scheduled to work at today...when i reported in they realized they were fully staffed and said: since we have to pay you 4 hours anyway, we are short an Aide, so we need you to work as a PCA for the 4 hours. i'm thinking....can they do this??

I called my agency and they said i "had to". This really bothered me...not that i am above an aides work...but that's not what i was booked for or what i went to school for! Also this hospital is notorious for cancelling due to poor scheduling. I ended up getting vitals then went to house super and said I'm leaving. Just curious if this is common place.... thanx

live4today, RN

Specializes in Community Health Nurse.

Were you paid as a CNA or as a RN?

If you were paid as a RN to do nurse assist duties for four hours, you made out like a bandit. Otherwise, I would have rolled on out the same door I rolled into and went home. :chuckle

Since I already do nurse aide duties and RN duties every shift I work, I would have loved the opportunity to be paid as an RN and only be responsible for nurse aide duties!!! :D

I live in a rural area, and, a number of years ago, knew of an area hospital that used to offer the nurses (RNs!) a choice of getting called off/sent home (no pay) or working in the KITCHEN when they found themselves overstaffed for the census ... I was always surprised that the nurses would put up with this kind of treatment, but there weren't a lot of other nursing opportunities in the area.

As long as they paid RN salary and I didn't have to do RN work as well as aide work, it would be fine with me, even working in the kitchen would be fine as long as they paid me RN pay! It would be a nice break.

I guess my problem with the situation is when you report in and they have overbooked, they have to pay 4 hour turn around pay regardless when they send you home...so i guess it boils down to me wanting to go home with my 4 hour pay :D

it is smart on the hospital's part to at least get something for their 4 hour pay but it just didn't seem appropriate i guess. ah well....experience noted. thanx for the input.

ZASHAGALKA, RN

Specializes in Critical Care. Has 15 years experience.

My take has always been that if a hospital wants to pay me RN wages to be a CNA (read NO CHARTING): woohoo!

If they have to pay you 4 hrs, they can use you anyway within the scope of your license: that's the disadvantage of being agency - you are at their discretion for need.

On the other hand, I worked agency at a hospital once that, when they had to pay me 4 hrs (the discovered too late they wouldn't need me), they would work me 7p -11p and then make me report off and send me home. If you've ever worked the night shift on a busy floor, 7-11 is the BUSIEST TIME! I always thought it was garbage to send me home AFTER I GOT ALL THE WORK DONE FOR THAT SHIFT.

And just try to get your charting done in such a short span while also trying to get meds passed and patients settled for the evening!

I'd much rather be the CNA than to have to report off on all my now sleeping patients and only get paid 4 hrs for what I feel is the bulk of a 12 hr shift!

~faith,

Timothy.

jmgrn65, RN

Specializes in cardiac/critical care/ informatics. Has 16 years experience.

In my state it is beyond the scope of practice to practice as an aide, think about it if you can't work as an aide after you graduated from nursing school, then why would you be able to work as an aide as an RN.

Tweety, BSN, RN

Specializes in Med-Surg, Trauma, Ortho, Neuro, Cardiac. Has 28 years experience.

I would take it in stride if it doesn't happen that often. I probably would have enjoyed the change of pace.

Depsite the fact that they say "you're working as an aide", according to the BON you're an RN still liable for a RN level of care. Whose responsible for the patient when you walk in the room? In theory the patient has two licensed profressionals caring for them.

But I'm with you. You should have been given the option or not, rather than be forced to work as an aide. It's inappropriate in my opinion to ask an RN to perform as a CNA.

KaroSnowQueen, RN

Specializes in Telemetry, Case Management. Has 30 years experience.

I refused to do it and they still paid me my 4 hrs in the end. They didn't like it but that's their problem. Seems to me the facility is screwing themselves by paying Nurse pay for CNA work.

Depsite the fact that they say "you're working as an aide", according to the BON you're an RN still liable for a RN level of care. Whose responsible for the patient when you walk in the room? In theory the patient has two licensed profressionals caring for them.

QUOTE]

That's why I cringe when I'm floated as an aide. I feel out of control and as if I need to worry about the dedication and skill of the RNs I'm working with. When I was an aide my responsiblity ended with "Mr Smith in room 2 is c/o chest pain" or "Mrs Jones seems more confused than this AM" and I have first hand experience as an aide on how the nurse may have ignored requests or troubling symptoms. Now when I say Mr Smith asked for his nitro, I have to be extra concerned whether it was given and how he feels now, etc. (of course I would have been as an aide, also) Now I'm legaly an RN involved in his care and if things go wrong no lawyer or family member will care that my assignment that day was just to empty his foley and bring his dimmer tray. I guess that sounds a bit whiney or far fetched but as "an aide" I'm assigned to more pts and don't get the background info or time to refer to the chart, kardex, MAR, etc or the same info from the doctor after rounds to be able to see the whole picture (and have gotten dirty looks from the assigned licensed nurse for checking info- not part of my scope of practice that day) but I will be held to the same standard of "reasonably prudent RN"

Sorry if that's confusing? Am I way off? Do others see it this way?

misschelei

Specializes in Picu, ICU, Burn. Has 8 years experience.

I guess this happens a lot. I have never heard of it probably cuz I do mostly ICU. I would be very uncomfortable and think I would probably refuse too.

schroeders_piano

Has 17 years experience.

I was placed on low census once. Instead of sending me home, they had me helping environmental services. Heck, for $28/hr I'll mop any floor. It felt like a night off.

Schroeder

I was placed on low census once. Instead of sending me home, they had me helping environmental services. Heck, for $28/hr I'll mop any floor. It felt like a night off.

Schroeder

That's awesome! I'd do it without hesitation. If I'm still being paid the rate I was promised as a nurse, I wouldn't consider it below me at all. Instead, I'd be thankfulllllll that they were generous enough to OFFER me a way to not go home virtually empty handed.

I'll take an overpaid mop detail any day! :)

Gompers, BSN, RN

Specializes in NICU.

Since they had to pay the same you no matter what job you did or if you stayed or not...

I don't understand why they didn't just lighten up the nursing assignments, therefore creating one more assignemnt for you. That way, being short an aide wouldn't have been such a big thing since you'd all have decent assignments and more time to spend with each patient?

I don't work med-surg anymore, but I just don't understand why this wasn't done, since they had to pay you the same amount anyways.

txspadequeenRN, BSN, RN

Specializes in ICU, PICC Nurse, Nursing Supervisor. Has 20 years experience.

If I am at my own job I will do anything from mopping to cleaning baseboards. However, when I work agency and get cancelled upon arrival I am leaving with my 2-4 hr inconvience pay. They are paying you because they can't get their stuff straight and cancel folks 2 hours prior to shift, not to work as a aide.

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