Why Staffing Needs Fluctuate
It’s frustrating at times for medical office managers to realize that the staffing needs of the facility in question fluctuate far more than expected at any given time. There are a variety of reasons that might happen, and some of those reasons can occur all at once, making things even more complicated and challenging. Even if staffing needs don’t remain the same, it’s a problem that has solutions.
Patient Needs Fluctuate
Some seasons are more likely to have an increase in patients to certain types of facilities. For instance, flu season can bring in a huge number of patients beyond the normal projected number of appointments per day. When that happens, the facility is short-staffed and patient wait times grow exponentially. To get a handle on that problem, supplemental staffing brings in extra coverage.
Tasks Can Change Daily
But it’s not just an influx of patients that can cause workload stress. Paperwork builds up, even with electronic medical charting, and there may be times when the phones are out of control. Patients need and expect that someone will get back to them within a timely manner, whether that’s because they asked a question or they need results back from tests.
Staff Members Are People, Too
Permanent staff members are human. They have lives outside of the facility and sometimes they get sick or need to take care of family members. Of course, that doesn’t always happen at the most convenient times for a medical practice. Supplemental staff can easily fit right in and ensure that the practice and the patients still have a great experience.
The Unexpected Happens
The bottom line is that the unexpected happens every day, especially in a medical facility. There are times when regular staffing levels are more than adequate to meet the needs each day. But when the unexpected elbows through, that creates a situation that might need a more creative approach. And whether that situation is extremely temporary or lasts for several weeks or months, supplemental nursing staff might be the perfect answer.
There’s no one way to keep staffing needs at the same level all the time, as much as that would make life a little less complicated. But it is possible to put supplemental medical staffing in place as needed to solve shortages as they pop up. This is a solution that can have both long- and short-term benefits no matter the size of the facility.