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My Weekends

Clint Maun, CSP

An interesting phenomenon is occurring in healthcare organizations. It's been an issue for a long time, but is becoming a major concern for facilities trying to deliver consistent services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. This concern is associated with the growing expectations by co-workers and managers related to working weekends.

It is important for organizations to have product consistency all day, every day. In healthcare facilities the opportunity for appropriate interactions with families and visitors often occur during nights and weekends. Many customers shop facilities on nights and weekends, and that's also a time period where survey teams are stepping up their involvement because they know inconsistency of delivery can occur.

We find many individuals in healthcare organizations are resistant to changing delivery systems. They may have grown to positions within the organization through seniority or career ladders where they have an expectation of time off on the weekends.

While we need to encourage team based involvement in scheduling, as mentioned in previous articles, it is important to call attention to this continuing problem with the organization's need to deliver 24 hour a day care, 7 days a week. To meet facility and employee expectations, we suggest the organization must have:
  1. Constant management & supervision present on the weekends.
  2. On-going delivery systems in important direct care and ancillary services throughout the week.
  3. A continuity of staffing 7 days a week, not just Monday through Friday.
  4. The ability for critical involvement with supervisors and professional specialists throughout the week, not just during the morning shift hours Monday through Friday.
  5. The ability to design availability for individuals to be present to assist families with services such as tours, admissions, discharges, questions regarding the facility and an on-going consistent delivery of services on a 7 day a week basis.

If your organization is to achieve notoriety, provider of choice and employer of choice ranking in the marketplace, it must be willing to take on this tough issue associated with everyone's attempt to have "my weekend" off. There has to be team-based discussion and conversation regarding the services that need to be delivered consistently. It is important the organization not cave into a growing trend where the facility is staffed by unseasoned or "unlucky" employees in the delivery system on weekend schedules.

Ask the organization to take a hard look at this situation and conduct true on-going discussions related to the ability to first and foremost meet the expectations of the customers.

For more information on this topic and others, refer to Proven Solutions.