Wisconsin Nurses Assoc. optimistic for retention in wake of travel nurse contract battles
MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - Travel nurses are claiming agencies are slashing their contracts, in some cases, by nearly 50% in recent months. As the controversy over decreases in pay for travel nurses continues, the Wisconsin Nurses Association is hopeful it could lead to more nurses staying in the state.
“I think the different tables that I sit at, everyone knows that retention is very important,” said WNA executive director Gina Dennik-Champion. “We’re really excited about those folks and how we know that we need to really want to help them succeed.”
Dennik-Champion believes the problems outlined in a recent NBC report with several national travel nurse agencies could lead to better talent retention for Wisconsin, an area of concern in recent years for the WNA. According to the report, a lawsuit filed against four agencies claims they “bait-and-switched,” offering nurses agreements at a higher rate of pay before slashing the contract.
Dennik-Champion says it is an opportunity to pull travel nurses to Wisconsin health systems, bringing in long-term help to understaffed hospitals. She says while salary increases could help bring in a new wave of RNs, they are looking for more.
“They want flexibility, they are looking for, you know, salaries isn’t the number one reason; it’s more of the work environment and the culture they’re working in,” said Dennik-Champion. “There’s some of those other benefits that they also appreciate.”
She adds that travel nurses also tend to trend younger, which means a new wave of RNs from that field would bolster the next generation of nurses in the state.
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