Factors for implementing robust on-call scheduling

Factors for implementing robust on-call scheduling

In fast-paced healthcare settings, where changes are happening across the board in trauma and emergency settings, hospitals have difficulty managing on-call coverage and reaching out to on-call provider when required for patient care.

Imagine a scenario where a nurse tries to reach an on-call hospitalist for a patient’s critical result. Typically, the nurse would have to go through multiple departments and tools to leave the provider’s a callback message or number.

Developing a solid plan for an on-call schedule displays an organization’s focus on consistency and reliability towards patient care.

Enterprise Shift Scheduling Software

A single platform to manage the complex need of shift administrators, providers, and enable HIPPA based clinical communication.

  • A mobile app for providers to have accurate On-Call schedule and notification or alert when the on-call schedule changes. The app should also allow the flexibility of the provider to make any schedule changes.
  • A mobile app for shift administrators to have accurate on-call schedules across the facility and make changes quickly as the need arises.
  • A read-only roster to be displayed in multiple locations for staff to know the on-call providers for each specialty.
  • An enterprise scheduling and clinical communication app for shift planner to efficiently manage the on-call and regular shifts.

Team Allocation

Managing the patient flow and maximizing optimization requires understanding the staff skill-set.
Building a successful cross-functional team requires:

  • A team should include providers of different skills. An example can be a hospitalist team that can have a combination of attending and app physicians.
  • A team should have the flexibility of adding more providers for surge readiness or when the demand arises.
  • A team should have consistent team-mates and schedules. Ex. can be Clinical Team for specialized care like Trauma Care, Role-Based team like ICU Nurse, Critical Team like Code Blue.
  • Not every specialty requires the same number of physicians or team. Building a team on demand and without any constraint for the number of providers will maximize providers’ efficiency.

On-Call Connect Information

Provider’s privacy of information is as crucial as HIPPA data.

  • A nurse across different specialties should have the right information for the on-call schedule physician. Calling a provider who is not assigned will have a detrimental effect on an employee’s happiness.
  • A nurse requiring to connect an on-call scheduler should not know the provider’s cell number; instead can look up the On-call schedule and connect with the physician.

Seasonal Factors

A shift planner should understand the seasonal factor to determine clinical capacity.
An on-call strategy based on seasonal factors can be:

  • Time of year when cold and flu may require more on-call staff.
  • Vacation time e.x. Thanksgiving and Christmas might have less staff and hence require more on-call physicians.
Efficient Communication in Clinical Care Setting

Efficient Communication in Clinical Care Setting

Phone tag is one of the significant reasons for provider dissatisfaction in healthcare. Voicemails are left, and colleagues get frustrated. Thus, providers use different ways to contact other medical staff using different fast and efficient methods but not secure, such as standard text messaging.

Standard text messaging is not connected to the hospital’s staff directory, which causes the provider to go to different fragmented software such as team chat or a shared excel file to find the contact information.

Additionally, calling a physician when the provider is not working increases provider frustration and impacts care coordination.

Five critical criteria to remove communication error in healthcare enterprise settings are:

Digital Schedule

For efficient communication when required, knowing which medical staff is working and where is essential. For e.x. when a nurse needs to discuss a critical patient result with attending, knowing which provider to connect to or a nurse taking care of a patient in ICU needs to communicate with an on-call physician quickly without combing through different software.

A digital schedule where all the staff has access to provider contact information without compromising physician privacy from a different hospital location will benefit the provider and patient care quality.

HIPPA Messaging Platform

An increase in the cyberattack targeting all industries, including healthcare, all hospitals software such as EHR, Practice Management, Scheduling Software needs to have security and HIPPA compliance enabled

As providers connect with other care team members, patient information shared across the text messages must be secured and HIPAA compliant environment in the cloud. For efficient cross-clinical communication, staff can message privately or in groups and can share files images related to patient care.

Easy to use App for Medical Staff

The providers are currently feeling the pain of learning technology and using multiple software to be efficient. The staff needs a simple easy to use mobile app where they can apply for leave, make schedule changes, and connect with the team for clinical communication for voice or video call and chat.

An integrated app will allow the staff to be alerted or notified for any clinical communication or schedule changes and enable a provider to focus on a most critical task, taking care of patients.

Creating Flexible Team

Well-implemented team-based care can improve the comprehensiveness, coordination, productivity, effectiveness, and value of care and the satisfaction of patients and medical staff.

To achieve this potential, the transition to team-based care requires, for most practices, profound changes in the culture and organization of care.

A key pillar for team-based care is an interaction among colleagues in a single integrated app, and exchanging the patient information is a secure and HIPAA compliant platform.

Along with building team-based care, the team should also allow for flexibility to add staff when required and ensure that the right providers are available for the right time without patient flow.

Find out how Dockyo Advanced Scheduling can assist with efficient communication across healthcare settings.

Innovative Strategies for Internal Sourcing

Innovative Strategies for Internal Sourcing

With a low employment rate, healthcare enterprise faces challenges to have adequate medical staff coverage for better patient care. As a result, the hospital shift planner is looking for various options to reduce the locum budget and improve employee engagement quality

Here are a few strategies that can help with internal sourcing:

Enterprise shift schedule.

Shift planners should invest in online healthcare shift scheduling software with information about the provider’s availability across the enterprise health system. Shift administrator should be able to use a larger pool of providers when a shift is sourced and can see which provider is available for additional work with less budget than hiring a locum.

Inform provider on regular shifts or shift changes

Providers should have a mobile app with accurate information about the current schedule and when a recent scheduled shift has changed. Providers should have the ability to swap, trade, or drop shift when needed and informing the scheduler for changes to have a change sourced

Leverage gamification for better employee engagement.

Companies with a fair employee engagement process have more chances to have a shift secured by internal medical staff. Gamification triggers motivation across the medical staff and encourages providers to perform better and drive better productivity.

Few examples of gamification are

  • Providers can bid for a shift.
  • Providers can win a Superhero provider for a month for most working on a source shift
  • A provider can donate a percentage of overtime shift back to the medical community and matching donation to be added by the hospital board.

Invest in the right communication tool.

Employees should always have a tool to communicate and collaborate across when needed. Providers should have the means to send SMS to the team securely, or the scheduler can call the OnCall physicians without displaying the provider contact information. A provider should have the flexibility to notify the scheduler via a shift scheduler app without sending email and constant follow up for a response.

Focussing on the above strategies should reduce the locum budget and improve patient care quality by leveraging internal resources who know hospital processes and systems.

Manage Healthcare Staff Leave Through Scheduling Software

Manage Healthcare Staff Leave Through Scheduling Software

Building a complicated schedule by a shift administrator for clinical capacity requires knowledge of staff’s time off and leave. As a shift administrator, you are responsible for building your specialty schedule and ensuring shifts are equally distributed.

Without online scheduling software, you have to compile the leave data from the payroll system, email, post-it notes, calling the physician, and even remember a conversation. Managing time off for a shift administrator or scheduler is complicated, time-consuming, and incorrect shift can lead to revenue loss and patient care issues.

For some group planning, a quarterly schedule can take an average of 2 – 5 days, depending on several specialties and the department’s size.

This multitude of factors is difficult to manage using manual tools such as spreadsheets, phone trees, and email.

Dockyo, designed for healthcare professional scheduling, solves the planning issue,

  • Allow the staff to enter the time off details by a physician on a native iOS or Android mobile app. The team can plan ahead of time, can even input your leave in advance or change them as needed.
  • The scheduler has updated information during the planning to avoid conflicts.
  • As a scheduler releases schedules in real-time, physicians get notified via text alert, and any conflict’s on leave can be resolved in real-time.
  • Schedulers can now source shift earlier and ensure that the scheduler manages clinical capacity through online leave management.
  • Finally, shift administrators can generate a customized report to integrate with the payroll management system to ensure accurate payroll disbursement.

Providers are now turning to technology and strategic scheduling to address their unique staffing needs. Adopting a SaaS cloud-based scheduling system benefits everyone in the team, brings transparency to the planning, and significantly reduces the time spent by shift administrators to manage capacity.

First Step For Provider Scheduling

First Step For Provider Scheduling

Healthcare organizations should manage the clinical capacity with patient demand to avoid delays in patient care. To ensure efficient coordination and manage the capacity of all providers and staff in a multi-specialty organization requires an efficient scheduling and communication platform.

The first step to initiate provider scheduling includes:

1. Centralize healthcare shift scheduling platform to schedule providers across the enterprise

Dockyo scheduling takes into account multiple constraints including shift time, preferred providers in a team, labor laws for the shift worked to create schedule across the enterprise, multi-specialty, multi-team settings.

2. Visibility into where providers are working and who are working, including how to contact them quickly.

An intuitive dashboard with transparency across the organization of providers who are working today and how to connect when required. The scheduler view can be integrated with EHR to provide visibility across the organization.

3. Empower providers

For upfront planning of leave and schedule changes. The provider uses Dockyo’s mobile app to submit requests, which are automatically integrated into schedule creation. They can also swap shifts with other team members. A provider can submit requests for shifts which allows the scheduler/planner to meet provider preference to maintain a happy employee engagement.

4. Enable tracking and analysis of how providers are trending towards a target.

Dockyo brings together scheduling & labor data from across the organization to inform effective staffing strategy and provides actionable insight to achieve a continuous cycle of improvement, resulting in reduced costs and increased patient access.

By continuous improvement on your scheduling need, the overall health of your enterprise will continue to be better including patient flow with proper care, increased revenue, and provider job satisfaction.