Chronic workforce shortages and the financial impact of traditional outsourced nurse staffing solutions have created a delicate balancing act for nursing homes, requiring them to walk a razor’s edge between the two C’s, cost and coverage. However, recent research has found that a third C, consistency, is another key consideration for nursing home success.
What is Consistency?
A recent study published in Production and Operations Management found that minimizing the number of unique nursing aides who care for nursing home residents during at least one shift each month would lead to improved workflows and yield significant benefits to residents. “Our approach found the continuity benefit was clear and completely maintained with a pooled approach to nurse staffing,” said Vincent Slaugh, corresponding author of the study and professor of operations management at Cornell University. “Tools like IntelyCare’s scheduling software are exactly what nursing homes need to realize these benefits as economically as possible.”
It makes logical sense that by consistently having the same care teams, nursing homes can minimize the loss of informal but critical patient information that nursing staff are privy to when they care for the same patient. Building these relationships and trust dynamics is essential to ensuring high-quality care.
While consistency may elicit the notion of always having the exact same staff, the study also revealed that even a moderate improvement in the consistency of staff proved to be beneficial. The research showed that when facilities picked from a stable, limited pool of nursing staff, they were able to yield consistent benefits. In this way, facilities can reap the benefits of consistency while broadening their options with a temporary workforce.
Achieving the Three Cs
By adopting a hybrid nurse staffing and scheduling approach that balances all three Cs – costs, coverage, and consistency – nursing homes have the best chance of overcoming their biggest challenges and supporting the needs of their patients and nurses alike. Organizations that choose to tap into a temporary workforce method can ensure they are appropriately staffed at all times, guaranteeing the necessary care nursing home residents need and avoiding regulatory fines.
Nursing home facilities that would like to achieve maximum financial and staffing benefits must simultaneously prioritize and balance the Three C’s. The staffing solutions that optimize cost, coverage, and consistency are available and ready to use. When nursing facilities leverage this type of technology, they will be better equipped to care for patients and minimize the effects of burnout.
The IntelyCare Approach
Based on this research, we have been working with our clients to optimize our gig model to increase consistency. Solutions like nurse staffing and scheduling software allow facilities to meet staffing requirements while ensuring appropriate workloads and optimal patient care. Nursing can be an emotionally taxing occupation with some of the highest burnout rates.
IntelyCare’s on-demand staffing solution and scheduling software allow nurses the flexibility to choose the hours that are right for their physical, mental, and financial well-being. This also enables nursing homes to reap consistent benefits by quickly viewing where PRN nurses and CNAs have been staffed and developing consistent relationships with per diem IntelyCare nurses and CNAs. Putting nurses in the driver’s seat and giving them control over their schedules improves staff satisfaction and retention. By building in visibility and consistency, we are optimizing patient outcomes at the same time.
Ready to simplify your scheduling? The best way to see the value of IntelyCare is to see it in action. Get in touch today, and our team will be happy to provide a hands-on demonstration for your facility. Get started today.