We're seeing a trend of more and more home health agencies leasing company cars for their nurses as a way to offset the rising price of gasoline and help with nurse recruiting and retention.
Bon Secours Home Care in Newport News, VA leased 15 white Toyota Corollas for registered nurses who have worked there for at least six months. Bon Secours pays for the lease, maintenance, insurance and gas — whether it's for work or personal use. Providing vehicles is the latest effort by Bon Secours to fill home health nursing positions, which can be more difficult to fill than other nursing positions, said Sharon Riddick, director of Bon Secours Home Care.
"For the first time in quite a while, I'm fully staffed, which is wonderful," Riddick said. "You don't see that very often because of the national shortage of nurses."
The Bon Secours program will cost the health system about $600 a month per car. Nationally recruiting and training a nurse costs about $40,000. The program is voluntary, so nurses may opt to continue receiving a mileage reimbursement.
As I'm writing this blog, I'm working with a county government based home health agency in Arizona. They have county owned cars for some of their nurses. The CFO commented that using county cars is a great savings for their agency and they are looking to purchase more cars.
What is your experience with providing cars for nurses? What do your nurses prefer?
Recently, Sentara Healthcare polled some of the system's more than 300 home care nurses about providing cars, and the nurses overwhelmingly preferred mileage reimbursement. Riverside Health System also decided not to provide cars after asking its home health nurses and other field staff.
"We found out that a lot of them really liked getting that mileage check every month," said Mike Boggs, administrator of Riverside's home care division.
Give us your comments below.