In addition to finance issues workforce issues are really crushing many facilities in long term care communities today. Wages and benefits are certainly at the heart of these issues. But if we are to be honest, there’s much more involved here. An absolute workforce transformation that promotes: improved equity, safety and overall job satisfaction must be part of the collective post pandemic healthcare picture.
Along with residents and families, many staff in long term care also suffered the baneful impacts of the pandemic as well. These include pandemic onset communication issues, PPE issues, role confusion, virus fears, virus illnesses and unfortunately even virus related deaths have all been part of an increasingly unfavorable work environment.
Facilities will certainly need to rely on forms of government support for wage and benefit improvements. However, facilities have an internal locus of control for effecting a positive workforce transformation right now. And this transformation has to be more than simply injecting increased numbers of staff into the facility. For owners and operators in long term care a workforce transformation has to include a commitment to staff investments that take shape in a variety of forms.
As we move out of the acute stage of the pandemic and into more chronic management many facilities find themselves in a re-building effort. Yet, without proper staffing in appropriate numbers and improved overall job satisfaction facilities are really unable to seriously address other areas of their operations. Facilities will have to depend on strong leadership, collaborative partnerships and a true dedication to staff investment in order to thrive in this new environment. In no particular order I have listed 10 investment considerations (outside of wages and benefits) for a true long term care workforce transformation.
1. Implementation of collaborative processes and systems that are effective and beneficial
2. Utilization of cost effective, beneficial technologies
3. Utilization of a comprehensive on-boarding program for new hires- includes mentoring
4. Dedication of comprehensive skills training for elevated competencies
5. Nurturement of staff with opportunities for advancement as possible
6. Sharing of and discussions about appropriate meaningful analytics
7. Creating and integrating a positive work culture with cultural changes made as needed
8. Utilization of sound, timely and effective communication processes
9. Prioritization of workplace safety measures and programs
10. Assessment of all departments in the facility for department efficiencies and resources
Not sure where or how to begin? Contact me today to discuss ways that we can assist you with solutions for your specific workforce issues. And ask me about OPTICS for optimized reimbursement, compliance and care quality.
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