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Per Diem Nursing Jobs Increase As Pay Decreases For Travel Nurses

The reality has changed widely in the short period that the pandemic lasted. One of the most affected realities is the one of the healthcare system and all those involved in it. Per diem nursing jobs are increasing in popularity as more nurses see pay cuts in the travel sector. Keep reading to learn more about this trend, why travel nursing salaries are decreasing, and how PRN jobs help facilities and clinicians.

COVID-19 Has Led To Burnout & The High Pay Rates Are Over

Nurses have undoubtedly gone through difficult historical periods. However, the pandemic of Covid-19 has left many economic consequences for all health personnel. In particular, it has left implications in the way of doing nursing jobs.

During the pandemic, many nurses were hired on a temporary, last-minute basis. For example, a significant number of nurses were handled through travel nursing jobs, and it is through travel nursing that hospitals that had a pronounced nursing shortage and considerable urgency were able to have the number of nurses on hand to cover their current health crisis.

Why Are Travel Nursing Wages Decreasing?

Travel nursing is a way of moving nurses from one place to another when needed in a specific region, or so the travel nursing program was created. What currently happens is that hospitals and healthcare centers had financial support and incentives during the pandemic to subsidize these travel nurses' higher salaries, lodging, and travel expenses. As it happens, these subsidies are now running out as the pandemic is decreasing in severity. There are fewer critically ill patients, hospitals are not as overcrowded in their emergency rooms, and nurses are not as highly needed in numbers as they used to be in specific locations.

This is one of the main reasons why travel nursing salaries are declining. What is alarming is that, in many cases, many nurses started with a travel nurse contract at a set rate. These wages were reduced by as much as 60% in the last weeks of the contract, leaving nurses to seek lawsuits to remedy this terrible injustice. Many institutions must now respond to these nurses. The average wage for travel nurses was recorded in 2022 as $50 per hour and has decreased by as much as 50-60% in recent months.

In any case, one of the most viable options for nurses to earn a competitive, quality salary, save money, and have a better quality of life used to be travel nursing. Travel nursing had a massive appeal to nurses in its heyday, as they could get enough salary in a few weeks to feel comfortable and treat themselves well.

Currently, most nurses do not want to stay with a fixed contract in one hospital. There are many reasons for this, among which are, for example, low salaries or the low appreciation of hospitals and healthcare centers for nurses. If your healthcare facility wants to learn how to improve nurse retention, read this article here. Many nurses also find travel nursing attractive because they get to know new places, have more challenges in varied work, therefore less monotony, and learn more by working in different regions and hospital settings. All these positive requirements can also be found in per diem nursing, also called PRN.

PRN nursing jobs (PRN stands for pro re nata, meaning 'when required') are the way the nursing shortage that is still present is being addressed and is advantageous for both hospitals and nurses. Per diem means 'per day,' and it is a way of temporary hiring in the nurse marketplace where nurses can get jobs in the gig economy with better pay and a choice of work schedules. The outlook for PRN nursing in 2023 is high and expected to grow by 9% with increasing salaries.

Why per Diem Nursing Jobs are a Better Option for Healthcare Facilities and Nurses?

  • It is convenient for hospitals to use PRNs or per diem nurses because they can hire on-demand, so they will only fill the available shifts. They save money by not having to provide benefits and not having to lose staff because they feel overworked due to the shortage of nurses. Overall, hospitals save a lot of time in hiring by having per diem nurses, and they also save money and resources and have the option of looking for other workers.
  • Nurses find many advantages to working PRN or per diem. For starters, the salaries are higher, and they can choose to work the higher-paying shifts. There is also the advantage that they can work in different branches of nursing, i.e., today, and they can work as a pediatric nurse. Still, their next shift tomorrow could be in geriatrics, emergency, etc. Another advantage is that as more and more hospitals upload their schedules to the Nursa app, nurses can choose the schedules that best suit them.

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Booher, RN
Blog published on:
November 11, 2022

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