Large healthcare organizations and small practices may differ in scale, but they have several common concerns when it comes to clinicians, patients, and general productivity. Work/life balance, productivity, communication - clinicians of all specialties are affected by these factors, whether they’re handled properly in their organizations or not.
Physicians, nurses, and advanced practitioners need to work in an environment that’s conducive to a healthy work/life balance. These individuals are dedicated to patient care, however their stress level has a direct impact on the patient, especially when that level is high.
If one-on-one meetings between a member of the administration and each clinician are possible, they should happen once every few months. The administration should check in with each member of the team to ask about the status of work and personal obligations.
Since one-on-one meetings are often impossible because of busy schedules, another option is to create a work environment that encourages health and wellness for all clinicians. This includes providing healthy snacks or meals for the team several times a month, encouraging group interactions during shifts (when time allows) and after, and educating everyone on burnout so signs are quickly recognized and action can be taken.
Burnout is an escalating concern among all specialties, emergency medicine in particular, and it has been suggested that healthcare leaders need to be more proactive in prevention and treatment for the sake of the entire organization.
“Physicians, nurses, and advanced practitioners need to work in an environment that’s conducive to a healthy work/life balance.”
The productivity of a department is related to several things--work/life balance, the administration’s relationship with clinicians, shift scheduling, and team morale.
If clinicians don’t feel appreciated or are exhausted and don’t feel as if there’s anyone they can talk to about it, they’re less likely to bring 100% to patient care. This, of course, means the patients suffer in small ways, whether they realize that or not.
Improvements in productivity often begin with scheduling. Clinicians need to know when and where they’re scheduled to work, with minimal confusion, and feel as though shift times are distributed in a realistic way, while accounting for fairness (whatever that means for the group).
It cannot be said enough: communication is key. Clinicians need to communicate clearly and consistently with one another, and the administration needs to do the same with their clinicians whenever possible. A breakdown in communication is detrimental for everyone in a healthcare organization.
Ideally, communication should also go hand in hand with scheduling. An effective scheduling solution not only allows for changes to a schedule on any device, but can also integrate paging and maintain HIPAA compliance while doing so.
Recruiting skilled physicians who fit the team and respond well to patients is a top priority for any growing organization, yet retaining those individuals is often overlooked.
Work/life balance and communication, mentioned above, play key roles here. Clinicians are more likely to remain with an organization if they feel they are valued, they’re aware of what’s going on in administration, and they can effectively balance their work and personal lives.
“A breakdown in communication is detrimental for everyone in a healthcare organization.”
A great way to address all of the above concerns is through efficient, attentive scheduling.
Whatever your scheduling method is now, if you’re spending hours during or after work trying to create a viable schedule each month or constantly fielding complaints from clinicians who are fed up, a physician scheduling solution can relieve you of those issues.
Intrigma’s Efficient Works scheduling solutions for physicians, nurses, and advanced practitioners, for example, allows teams to maintain constant contact and remain aware of when and where they’re assigned to work each day. Schedulers can personalize the system so that it monitors fairness--whether that means preventing one clinician from working several consecutive weekends or ensuring holidays are rotated throughout the team.
If you think your organization can benefit from a switch to a scheduling solution, check out Efficient Works today: