Navigating the Per Diem Path: Key Factors Before Accepting Employment

In today’s evolving healthcare landscape, Athletic Trainers (ATs) are sought after for their versatile skill sets across various work environments. One such avenue gaining traction is per diem employment (or PRN), offering opportunities on an as-needed basis. From emerging AT roles in businesses to community outreach initiatives by hospitals or sports organizations, per diem gigs present a diverse array of prospects. However, before diving in, it’s crucial to consider several factors to ensure a mutually beneficial arrangement. Here are some key questions to ponder when contemplating per diem employment:

Clarify Responsibilities 

What are the specific duties of the AT position, and is there a documented outline of these tasks? Given the wide spectrum of employment settings, responsibilities can vary significantly. Whether it’s providing services at a youth sports event or within an industrial setting, clarity on roles ensures adherence to relevant regulations and standards, be it OSHA policies or state athletic training guidelines.

Establish Standards 

Are there established policies and minimum standards of care in place? From emergency action plans to workplace safety protocols, ensuring a safe and supportive environment is crucial. If such standards aren’t expressed, it’s essential to address them before committing to the role to safeguard both parties involved.

Understand Employment Status 

What is the employment classification for the per diem role? Whether as an independent contractor or an employee, understanding the implications of your employment status is vital. Independent contractor status brings distinct responsibilities regarding taxes, liabilities, and contractual agreements. Clear communication and documentation regarding services, payment terms, and supply provisions are imperative to avoid any misunderstandings down the line.

Navigating per diem employment demands careful consideration of various responsibilities and contractual aspects. Effective communication with potential employers is key to fostering a transparent understanding of the employment relationship and service expectations. While the points highlighted above offer a starting point, each per diem opportunity may entail additional considerations based on its nature. By approaching these opportunities with diligence and clarity, both ATs and employers can foster a productive and mutually beneficial working relationship.

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