Patient-centered staffing boosts quality of care
Enhanced provider scheduling improves service and the workplace
Everyone suffers when healthcare facilities aren’t staffed properly. Too much staff increases costs. Too little staff can decrease quality of care.
While staffing levels are all about maintaining patient health and safety, they also have an impact on the lives of healthcare professionals. When there is enough patient coverage on duty, pressure fades, fatigue lessens and workplace injuries are minimal.
Hospitals with supportive staff management have higher reported patient satisfaction.
--Center For Advancing Health (cfah.org) Supporting Front-Line Hospital Staff Leads to Safer and Happier Patients, June 2012
Geisinger is there
Putting provider scheduling under a microscope
To get to the bottom of staffing challenges at Geisinger Wyoming Valley, we conducted a deep examination into every aspect of our scheduling process. The diagnosis? Inconsistency across the board. Many departments had their own scheduling methods, shorthand, forms, etc.
To fix our scheduling inconsistencies, we tore up our existing scheduling methods and starting from scratch.
Standardizing schedules to serve more patients
To put better scheduling procedures in place, we considered each department’s unique scheduling issues, gathered extensive patient data and collected staffing ideas from our staff. This enabled us to identify problems, ensure enough qualified healthcare professionals were on staff at all times and cut waste in our facilities.
Some improvements include:
- Converting consulting time to patient time
- Removing excess administration time
- Eliminating unnecessary meetings
- Reducing lunch time to 30 minutes
Our new staff scheduling standards added an additional 21,000 appointments system-wide each year, extended clinic hours and boosted schedule and provider availability. As a result, we’ve increased workforce satisfaction, improved patient care and reduced costs across Geisinger Wyoming Valley facilities.