According to the Q2 Randstad Healthcare Employee Confidence Index, healthcare workers are in increasingly high demand, and hospital employers are currently experiencing labor shortages. Many healthcare providers are in the midst of compliance efforts to meet deadlines for the implementation of ICD-10 and the mandated transition to electronic medical records. In addition to adding IT specialists to the staff, technological updates can lead to time-consuming training phases for the healthcare professionals who will use the new systems on a daily basis. Savvy healthcare employers are planning for this future and forecasting the staffing levels they will need for such challenging times. For many, contingent staffing is the answer for a smooth transition into an ever-more digital age. rns in demandPartly in anticipation of increased head counts with the coming impact of the ACA, demand is also up for skilled RN's. A March report by Wanted Analytics indicated that more than one million jobs were posted for healthcare-related occupations, representing a 3 percent year-over-year increase in hiring. Registered Nurses led the nation in the most job ads, up 13 percent when compared to March of 2012. Critical Care nursing jobs demonstrated the highest year-over-year growth with 34 [+]

healthcare new jobsIf the shortage of skilled labor wasn’t enough of a recruitment problem for healthcare providers, a recent CareerBuilder survey reveals that 34% of healthcare workers will be looking for new jobs in 2013 up from 24% in 2012. The reasons that healthcare workers gave for seeking a new position included heavy workloads, few promotion opportunities, inflexible schedules, and general frustration with work/life balance. 48% of Healthcare Professionals are Passive Job Seekers With both retention and recruitment being vital issues to resolve, it’s more important than ever for healthcare providers to streamline their recruitment process and make more informed staffing decisions. The survey also reported that 82% of healthcare professionals would be open to discussing a new job opportunity if it arose. The 48% considered passive candidates – those who are generally satisfied with their jobs but open to new possibilities – are the solution to both the recruitment and retention problems facing healthcare providers. Potential passive candidates reported that their reason for remaining with their current employer included the enjoyment of working with co-workers, location, salary/benefits, flexible shifts, and a general feeling of having satisfying and rewarding work. If that sounds like the ideal employee, it’s [+]

Construction of new hospitals has flatlined somewhat in 2012 while healthcare executives measure the impact of the Affordable Care Act. According to Health Facilities Management magazine, “Industry insiders expect roughly the same amount of spending on hospital construction in 2012 as in 2011, with specialty hospital projects and infrastructure upgrades helping to offset the drop in acute care hospitals. The survey shows that the shift in priorities from traditional hospitals to smaller, neighborhood or satellite facilities is accelerating.” A study conducted by HFM in regards to healthcare expansion plans reported that, “Future projects most frequently cited by survey parti­cipants in response to reforms are emergency departments, by 17 percent; outpatient facilities in neighborhood settings, by 16 percent; medical office build­ing expansions, 16 percent; and primary care clinics and urgent care centers in neighborhoods, both 14 percent.” Trauma Center Openings on the Rise Since 2009, more than 200 trauma centers have opened across the country with an additional 75 hospitals seeking approval to add centers to their operations, according to Kaiser Health News. Leading the charge in trauma center development is HCA, a Nashville-based healthcare company. HCA has added, or intends to add, 20 new trauma centers to its network in southern states such [+]

Vendor management software ensures nurses today and tomorrow As healthcare employers, we would probably be better off to resolve ourselves to the fact that we live in a constant state of  ‘nurse  shortage’, a condition where every able bodied, qualified nurse is an asset and finding and retaining the best and brightest is an ongoingnurse shortage and healthcare staffing solutions challenge.  This way, when water cooler talk revolves around today’s or tomorrow’s healthcare staffing challenges and nurse shortage, you can say “All over it, especially since I started sourcing nurse job candidates with vendor management software.” Earlier in the month, the New England Journal of Medicine once again reminded us that another nursing shortage is just around corner. This one caused by an exodus of nurses leaving the profession as the economy recovers. Findings in the Journal estimate that approximately 118,000 FTE registered nurses will exit the workforce in the next three years, but because of a lack of how recessions affect RN transitions in and out of healthcare "employers and workforce planners are unable to anticipate how many nurses might choose to leave the workforce once a robust jobs recovery begins," reports the [+]

The numbers are in. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported healthcare leading the nation in job creation the first nine months of 2011. September was a banner month, reports Labor, with healthcare employment taking 42 percent of new jobs created. By year’s end, job creation in healthcare is set to outpace all of 2010 by a third. “With more nurses, therapists and allied health professionals on-boarding at facilities of all types, effectively managing contingent labor, travelers and temporary help will be vital to operations,” said Sue Higgins, Director of Product Development at StayStaffed Technologies, a Florida-based vendor management firm. "Larger healthcare employers are back to hiring and the demand for nurse specialists and therapists with advanced credentials keeps growing." healthcare hiring increaseTo recruit, hire and process these highly-skilled healthcare jobs candidates, Stay Staffed Technologies provides healthcare employers with a virtual staffing Marketplace.*Loaded with automated features, this Internet-based vendor management marketplace enables the accurate matching of healthcare job candidates with posted job descriptions, promotes easy candidate review, documentation and credentialing, and establishes a foundation on which healthcare employers can build an internal workforce of talented candidates to call on in a moment’s notice.  The Marketplace requires no [+]

Of the 120 healthcare executives participating in a recent nurse staffing study, * 63 percent ranked quality as the number one reason they planned to hire more travel nurses and temporary labor in 2011.  Number two and three reasons were the immediate availability of travel nurses resulting in fast time to fill rates, and the reduction of non-productivity costs associated with hiring permanent staff, such as recruiting, payroll, benefits administration and others. BOCA RATON, FL July, 2011 – Effectively blending travel nurses and contingent workers with permanent staff can save healthcare employers up to 13 percent on staffing costs. Though during tough economic times hospitals may limit the use of travelers and temporary workers as a means of cutting costs, vendor staffing experts at Candidate Direct say doing so can have the opposite effect: too few travelers can increase staffing costs and reduce nurse efficiency. Last year alone, almost 90 percent of contingent staff users said costs would rise if they eliminated the use of temporary workers.  By increasing the ratio of travel nurses to permanent nurse staff hospitals can reduce costly overtime, health benefits, payroll taxes, pensions and paid time off. "With economic uncertainty on the horizon, investing in permanent staff [+]

Higher levels of education in healthcare have been tied to improved patient safety, outcomes and satisfaction. The demand for nurses with advanced degrees, such as the Advanced Nurse Practitioner, is increasing in clinical and educational settings, and even physical therapists are finding their skills in high demand, especially DPT's in sought-after specialties. The growth in outpatient care and the profession’s thirst for direct patient access, means that the DPT (Doctorate of Physical Therapy) is becoming the minimum for entering the field. Employing the best-educated, experienced nurses and therapists can make all the difference in quality patient care, no matter the type of facility. Consequently, hospitals and outpatient centers have begun increasingly upgrading the educational levels of their staffs and searching for caregiver graduates with terminal degrees. For this reason, healthcare employers choose to utilize the services of  Candidate Direct Marketplace TM (CDM) - a web-based, leading-edge technology that enables nurse managers and administrators to fulfill contingent workforce needs and to source candidates from anywhere in the country. This simplified workforce management solution helps healthcare organizations increase fill rates, decrease staffing spend, and, perhaps most importantly, significantly reduce time to hire. Product Development Manager for Candidate Direct, Sue Higgins, said [+]

Though ambulatory surgery centers (ASCs) present patients with unbridled convenience and investors with margins superior to hospital settings, the rapid growth of ambulatory care centers has revealed some unsettling risks.  The Centers for Disease Control, along with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recently evaluated the infection control practices of nearly 70 ASCs across Maryland, North Carolina and Oklahoma. Findings were shocking. More than 20 percent of ASCs surveyed had lapses in proper hand washing and the use of protective gloves. Fifty seven percent were cited for deficiencies in infection control and 30 percent reprimanded for deficiencies related to medication administration, including use of single-dose medications for multiple patients. Of the 68 ASCs surveyed, lapses included: Insufficient cleaning of high touch surfaces in patient care areas Inappropriate handling of equipment used for blood glucose monitoring Failure to adhere to recommended practices regarding reprocessing of surgical equipment Deficiencies related to injection practices Although most states require ASCs to meet various licensing requirements and conduct periodic inspections – not all do - or strictly enforce state requirements, resulting in lapses in quality patient care at under-inspected ASCs. And though nurse pay in Ambulatory Surgery Centers typically falls above the median, according to government statistics, ASCs pay often six to [+]

Nurses play vital role in EHR design and informatics For some, the advent of electronic health records (EHRs) is no secret. EHRs support clinical decision making, improve patient documentation and enhance patient safety through accuracy and error detection. nursing informatics Though in their relative infancy, EHRs are part of a growing healthcare field known as Nursing Informatics, a blossoming center of study focused on the research and development of best practices in the use of EHRs by healthcare staffing agencies will soon begin pursuing nursing informatics professionals as the profession matures and demand for the skill increases among healthcare employers. Nursing informatics programs are already underway at major universities and, with healthcare technology at the forefront of patient care, hospitals and outpatient centers will soon be on the lookout for nursing candidates fluent in informatics. While in the past, information technology experts were typically the ones who designed software for utilization in clinical settings, IT professionals often possess limited knowledge of work processes in the perioperative environment, leaving nurses best suited for EHR system design and processes development. A healthcare career in nursing informatics is ideal for RNs looking for less patient contact - the discipline is centered [+]

Doctors of Nursing Practice (DNP) programs have grown a hundred-fold in the past ten years. Nursing schools are asking that the DNP be the entry-level degree for advanced-practice nurses by 2015, and the American Association of Colleges of Nursing reports that more than 100 additional nursing schools are considering starting DNP programs nationwide by 2011. And Registered Nurses aren’t the only patient care professionals looking to advance academic credentials. More than 20,000 physical therapists are presently enrolled in physical therapy doctorate programs nationwide, aimed at achieving their DPT (Doctor of Physical Therapy), reports the APTA (American Physical Therapy Association). Should the DNP become the threshold for advanced practice nurses in five years, nursing state licensure will reflect that, so graduating from a DNP program in any one of 24 states participating in the Nurse Licensure Compact will enable multi-state licensure, immediately adding value to DNP credentials. Why the spike in RNs and Physical Therapists going back to school? It’s all about clinical leadership, say researchers at the Institute of Medicine (IOM), who report that the loss of mid-level healthcare managers in recent years has decreased direct management support to patient care staff, resulting in a need for increased knowledge and skills for clinical [+]

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