Staffing shortages are at an all time high. The pandemic has caused burnout for many nurses. As a nurse manager it is important to be an advocate for employees to ensure there is adequate and safe staffing. During the height of the pandemic our manager offered an incentive. The incentive motivated employees to pick up extra shifts. “Shift pay is the practice of paying a premium to employees who work the less desirable hours a business must operate. The premium, also called a shift differential, compensates workers who are scheduled for a second or third shift” (Chron, 2017). Another option offered was participating in the “COVID pool.” This COVID pool was a two week contract that consisted of ten twelve-hour shifts, they did not have to be consecutive days. I participated in this contract and it was extremely worth it. I became more invested in work for those two weeks than I probably should have. I had all of the same patients which means I knew each of their oxygen requirements, what day of COVID they were on, every little change in their lab values, etc. Being consistent with patients is helpful for the nurse and the patient relationship. “Consistency of care means low variability in care from shift to shift, day to day, nurse to nurse, resident to resident, attending to attending, and patient to patient” (Commonwealth Fund, n.d.). I believe during that time our manager effectively handled staffing shortages. She fought for us to continue to get incentives and opportunities. There were days and nights that she had to come in and work the floor because there was no one else available and she stepped up to the task. I know that managing during these times must be very stressful, but she has always found a solution.
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