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Tired of working ‘extra’...me too.


Specializes in Currently: Home Health. Has 13 years experience.

I have been a nurse since 2008. I’ve done hospital, office, now home health. I’ve done salaried (and with NEVER do it again) and hourly positions. I have yet to have had a job where I can REGULARLY get off at the time my shift is suppose to end. I’ve tried being more curt with the patients, I’ve definitely become more knowledgeable so I am faster, but still never off on time on a regular basis. Charting is the bane of my existence. I try to keep up but it often falls apart. Things I use to try to do (like look at a patient history or catch up on all the recent lab work) I certainly don’t do anymore. Cal me a millennial, call me entitled, call me lazy, I don’t really care anymore. Am I alone in being aggravated that job responsibilities are often significantly more than a person can get done in a shift? That more and more I’m also being made responsible for clerical duties like faxing forms, filing out special forms, looking up insurance benefits, on top of nursing duties.....but no additional time is given to accomplish these tasks...and then having my manager squwak at me for clocking out no lunch every day and working 2-3 hours over every day. Like I am getting brave because at my last evaluation I flat out told my boss that I don’t want to work more than 40 hours a week....that I don’t want to do ANY extra. She tried to tell me my assignment is “the industry standard”. Which is kinda funny because I’ve been around a while...and while it may be true that most hospitals have average floor assignments (like med/surg 1:6-7, ICU 1:1-2, or homecare seeing 30-35 patients a week) there is no such thing as an industry standard. One hospital can have acuity limits and supportive staff the the point that those 6-7 patients are WAY easier than at the hospital that has no floor secretary, no CNAs, and puts patients that could easily be considered IMCU patients on the same unit as honest Med/Surg units. And these variances in standards are so wide that I can’t really agree with the term ‘industry standard’ in nursing at all. 
So how many of you don’t feel overworked and get rebuffed when requesting to work less?

Chickenlady, ADN

Specializes in ER, GI, Occ Health. Has 7 years experience.

In Occupational Health I get off on time every day unless there is an emergency an hour before the shift is over.  In GI Lab I'm out on time or early 95% of the time.  In ER I'm out on time almost every shift.  In Corrections, I was out on time unless the next shift called off and I got mandated until they could get a replacement. 

LibraNurse27, BSN, RN

Specializes in Community Health, Med/Surg, ICU Stepdown. Has 8 years experience.

As an acute care nurse I usually leave the hospital at the time my shift ends, maybe 15 mins late if I need to finish charting or the report takes a long time. Maybe once a month 30 mins late due to charting on a bad day, and a few times a year an hour or more on a REALLY bad day. But on those 1 hr or more days I'll ask for OT pay and usually get it. Never 2-3 hrs late.

At the first hospital I worked at ratios were horrible and some of us would be 2 hrs late charting, but they always paid us OT. I always wondered why they didn't just make the ratios better so they didn't have to pay us OT. Maybe it was still cheaper to pay 2 hrs OT than a whole shift for another nurse? Who knows! But I think most hospital nurses usually get out close to on time. Hospital nursing is stressful, but at least there is a set end time, OT for extra hrs, and no work once you're off shift. You can put work out of your mind until your next shift!

NightNerd, MSN, RN

Specializes in CMSRN, tele, palliative, psych. Has 7 years experience.

Man, that sucks; I'm sorry that's your situation! That is definitely not reasonable, especially as a regular occurrence.

I personally don't leave late unless it took a while to give report or I had some documentation I didn't get to, and I try to keep that rare. I work my butt off while I'm at work and try my best to leave the next shift with a clean slate, but leaving on time is a hard boundary for me. If I'm later than maybe 30 minutes something catastrophic is happening on the unit. I'll stay to help if it's really that bad; I'm not heartless. Otherwise, I know I pack a lot of work into my 12 hours, so no guilt here.

At my last job I had a preceptor who was the loveliest person, and she always stayed late to make sure everything was perfect. If it couldn't be done on our shift, she would hang out until she could get it done. I could not wrap my head around that, as this is a 24-hour job. I would stay with her while I was on orientation because it seemed like her expectation - but WOW, was I glad to be on my own by the end.

brandy1017, ASN, RN

Specializes in Critical Care.

I think if you posted this on a home health page, you would find this is common practice.  Medicare and medicaid keep cutting reimbursement and home health responds by putting more work on the staff left or switching from hourly pay to pay by the numbers ie visits which I think is even  worse.  Nurses are treated like widgets and you have to pick the best job you can find among many crappy ones!

I think you would have better hours and work conditions if you could find a clinic job and leave hospitals and home care behind!

CommunityRNBSN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Community health. Has 3 years experience.

I work in an FQHC and I leave on time. However, that is because I have had to cultivate an attitude of “this is not my problem.”  And it is hard, because that attitude really does not come naturally to me. But I realized early on that I could literally stay in the office for 24 hours every single day and all the work would never be done. My shift ends at 4:30. So at 3:30, I say to myself “Which of these tasks HAVE to be done today?”  As in, the patient might actually die if it isn’t done before 4:30. Anything else goes to another nurse, or another day, or just doesn’t get done.

It is really tough to not care when you KNOW that important things are going to fall through the cracks. But there just isn’t any other way to do it when the workload is impossible. 

Hoosier_RN, MSN

Specializes in dialysis. Has 28 years experience.

Nurses only stay late in dialysis if there's an emergency or a patient isn't picked up immediately at last treatment. Other than that, out on time