• Maddie Thoms

Redefining Per Diem Nursing

The Latin phrase “per diem” translates to “by the day.” In the nursing community, per diem has traditionally referred to picking up one-off shifts either in addition to regularly scheduled shifts or in place of them. However, over the years, that practice and the definition of per diem nursing have evolved, and developed a common set of misconceptions among nurses and facilities.

Whether it’s extra cash or more flexibility, per diem nursing offers several attractive benefits – to nurses and facilities. Per diem nurses fill a very important gap in many facilities’ staffing needs. But for many in the healthcare community, per diem nursing holds a heavy stigma. Since per diem nurses are not salaried employees, they are sometimes mislabeled as not having the skills to handle the full-time rigors of a facility and/or the hospital floor, despite the fact they have the same qualifications as salaried nurses. Their value is underestimated. On top of that, per diem nurses are often at the mercy of the staffing agency, without any sense of control or ownership over when and where they are placed. They can sometimes be wrongly perceived as unreliable or noncommittal and their shifts are often canceled by facilities with little notice. 

connectRN is working to reverse these stigmas by changing the narrative around what it means to be a per diem nurse. For nurses, the practice offers greater flexibility and earning potential, but connectRN recognizes that the ultimate benefit of per diem nursing is the ability to define your own career path and shape your lifestyle regardless of where you are in your nursing journey. 

First and foremost, this means giving nurses more control. Traditional staffing agencies call their pool of clinicians whenever there is an available shift and assign them a shift and location; connectRN puts control in the hands of its clinicians, giving them the ability to choose between a variety of shifts on a convenient mobile app. Clinicians can choose which shifts they prefer and receive push notifications on whether they were selected by the facility for a shift.

For facilities, connectRN relieves the stress of having to make frantic phone calls to fill a shift by letting nurse managers select from a pool of vetted clinicians on a single digital platform the individual best “fit for shift.” Most importantly, connectRN lets facilities view each clinician’s unique credentials, giving them transparency into the clinician pool and empowering them to regain control of staffing. 

As the nationwide nursing shortage continues to escalate, the stigma associated with per diem nursing from the healthcare industry needs to shift to fill critical gaps in staffing, and to unlock the potential of nurses on the sidelines who would otherwise not be able to work and treat patients. 

In reality, to combat the deep-seated stereotypes connected with “per diem nursing,” a completely reimagined term is required to adequately convey the value of these nurses.

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