Hating Charge

Blend Images Photography | Veer
Being in charge is probably good for me, right? It keeps me aware of what’s going on, teaches me to delegate, helps me understand how a unit runs smoothly, and forces me to problem solve. But I think I hate it. And I’m not alone: many of my co-workers have opted out of charging my unit. Now I know why! Every night I dread going in only to find out I’m in charge (which I am most every shift I work).
I feel like charge takes away from my own patient care–because at my hospital, charge nurses need to take a patient assignment. I miss the model I’ve worked in before where the charge nurse is patient-free and can concentrate on being more of a resource to the other nurses, a critical thinker when it comes to working out unit problems, and available to doctors and management for the whole backing-up-your-fellow-nurses role. Plus at about 24 bucks for the shift, charge doesn’t pay that well as an incentive.

I know that charge “advances our skills,” but sometimes I just want to hunker down, give good one-on-one care and not worry about everyone else and the unit at large. *sigh* I’m reluctant to bail because then who would do it? That’s not the best reason, I know.

Anyone out there love charge? Advice?

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