Nurses were under stress well before the pandemic began. They knew their worth to their patients and to the healthcare community at large, but struggled to feel appreciated amid growing levels of exhaustion and burnout.
That struggle has continued, but so has their understanding of their worth. Their needs and a newfound sense of empowerment are shifting the narrative around healthcare nurse staffing. The shift also stems from nearly 195,000 registered nurse openings anticipated each year on average for the next 10 years and retirements that are outpacing new nurses entering the field. Efficient workforce strategies are crucial to solving the nursing shortage and averting strain on the healthcare system.
What workforce strategies should healthcare facility leaders have in place? Technology-enabled nurse staffing solutions that prioritize the needs of modern nurses are key. With these, leaders can gain access to expert nursing professionals to circumvent high turnover and increase retention rates. They can also deliver what today’s nurses want within the profession, their work cultures, and the healthcare community.
In a recent webinar, CareRev CEO and founder Will Patterson chatted with Teri Lux, President and COO at Froedtert Menomonee Falls, on the urgent need to address the needs of nurses and how technology-enabled solutions have evolved healthcare staffing.
Let’s take a look at some significant highlights from their chat.
Technology-enabled solutions are evolving healthcare staffing
Moderator: “Two in five nurses thinking of leaving, quite a startling statistic. What do you think is underexamined?”
Teri: “Our best-crafted plans may inherently include rocks that are added to the backpacks of the load that must be carried by a nurse throughout his or her shift. Those myriad of tasks and burdens really add to what's occurring today. We have that ability to remove these rocks from the backpacks and eliminate the weight that's being carried. And filling staffing holes with an on-demand tool, that's one effort that can be undertaken.”
Will: “Healthcare administrators like Teri and the Froedtert Healthcare system are really focused on this problem. Everyone's focused on it. There is a way to keep people in the industry, and we've seen it in other industries as well. There are always holes and there are always problems, but there is a solution and it's relatively easy: it revolves around making sure our workforce can work when they want to and has flexibility in their lives.”
Moderator: “How can leaders integrate new workforce technology solutions in a way that feels relatively seamless to nurses and doesn't inadvertently burden them even more?”
Will: “Leaders shouldn't have to make a decision every day on what staffing ratios are or how many people should be in which unit or what type of healthcare professionals should be there. Software should be able to help with that and be intuitive and make it easy. It’s really about using the tools that are already there, integrating into those with a new solution that brings this flexibility that the nursing workforce wants and the healthcare systems need in order to deliver ROI and get people to the bedside when the patients are actually there and not have people sitting idle in units.”
“I think this is essential for leaders nationwide, whether they use CareRev or not. It's about bringing in new tools that integrate into the solutions you have in order to adopt flexibility for your workforce and for external contractors as well.”
Teri: “Our lives are made so much easier when things are simplified in a manner that provides a solution. I don't need an additional click or a step or an additional task. CareRev is integrated into our current systems and programs. It allows for this easy on-demand solution to help mine our staffing gaps. CareRev works with you in a way that is different than in the past.”
Watch more from their chat below:
Healthcare facilities can harness a flexible nurse workforce
Between an increase in retirement and burnout still on the rise, healthcare facilities need to take action. Understanding the needs of nurses and investing in healthcare staffing solutions to assist them are the first steps in the journey to boost retention. Creating a local, on-demand per diem nurse pipeline can help alleviate the pressure healthcare facilities across the country continue to face.
Solving nurse turnover requires a bold, comprehensive approach, one centered on technology and that takes practical action to support nurses with flexibility and meet them where they are.
Access the full webinar to hear more on overcoming nurse turnover and shifting the staffing amidst the current nursing workforce crisis.