There are many benefits of working PRN or per diem shifts as a healthcare professional, and all of them are worth keeping in mind if you’re searching for more balance in your career. 

Healthcare facilities of all varieties value the work that PRN and per diem professionals can bring. And from nurses and nursing assistants to caregivers, and medical and rehabilitation technicians, there are all sorts of specialties that lend themselves well to this type of work, especially for those who want an alternative to the chaotic, on-call lifestyle that is all too common in the field.

Keep reading to explore some of the biggest and most impactful benefits of PRN and per diem nursing, and discover why so many healthcare professionals have already made the switch to these types of flexible careers.

Is Per Diem the Same as PRN?

Before we get into the benefits of working PRN, let’s talk semantics. 

PRN and per diem are often used interchangeably*, but some see a distinction between the two. While both allow healthcare professionals to fill shifts without a full-time commitment, some define PRN workers as those who stick to one medical facility or unit and must adhere to its staffing requirements. On the other hand, some define per diem workers as those who can work at various local facilities and have more flexibility regarding their schedules.

Deciding which is a better route is a personal decision based on your own needs and preferences. However, the benefits are largely the same, and either designation can be a fantastic solution for finding more balance in your work life. 

*To avoid confusion, please confirm with the company or facility you work with how each term is defined

PRN and Per Diem Benefits for Healthcare Workers

You have a ton to gain from switching to PRN or per diem nursing and not a lot to lose. So if you’re ready for a change, here are four reasons why this may just be the right transition to make.

  1. Results in lower rates of burnout 

A 2021 study published by the American Medical Association found significantly higher rates of burnout among nursing professionals who worked standard 40+ hour per week shifts versus those who didn’t. This higher likelihood was related to things like stressful work environments and inadequate staffing – both of which are of much less concern for PRN or per diem workers. 

  1. Offers a ton of flexibility

Not a fan of working weekends? Want to take time off for travel or another personal pursuit? Need a breather after a particularly hectic week or month? With PRN or per diem shift work, you get to remain in complete control over your schedule, meaning more flexibility and the ability to work when you want and how often you want without needing to clear it first with a higher-up. 

  1. Lends itself to a better work-life balance

You don’t have to work in healthcare for very long to realize just how severely it lacks in work-life balance. And even those who boast a strong work ethic are liable to face the consequences. In fact, many healthcare workers leave the field before the age of 30 for this reason alone. 

Being a nurse, or another type of caregiver, shouldn’t mean sacrificing your personal life or relationships. By opting for PRN or per diem shift work instead of a full-time gig, you can prioritize what matters in your life without having to give up on the career you worked so hard for. You can also take a step back if you notice the balance tipping more toward work than life, reevaluating your options and making the best decision for your future happiness. 

  1. It’s incredibly convenient

One of the most widely talked about PRN and per diem benefits is the convenience it offers for today’s healthcare workers. It’s never been easier to pick and choose the shifts you work and the facility or facilities you work for, with the ability to search for nursing gigs right from your smartphone. Pick up shifts same day and on-demand if you’ve got time to fill, or set up your schedule days, weeks, or months in advance so you know exactly what to expect. You call the shots, and can always make adjustments if your situation calls for it. 

Can You Earn More Working PRN?

If money is a major factor in deciding to make the switch to PRN or per diem work, you’re definitely not alone. 

Fortunately, pay for PRN and per diem healthcare workers tends to be premium, since facilities don’t need to cover additional expenses like PTO and healthcare benefits. In addition, you can always choose to work more if you want to earn more, meaning you have the ultimate say over how much you bring home year after year. 

How Do I Find PRN Shifts?

Considering all of the benefits of working PRN or per diem, why not join the many professionals who have already made the switch? Check out our blog to learn more about PRN and per diem work, and check out the Nurseio app for a quick and easy way to find shifts (or fill nursing roles) in your area.