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 [+]

Or will hospitals leverage healthcare staffing technologies in favor of the bottom line? With third-party payor reimbursements dropping below sustainable levels and healthcare reform shrinking Medicare and Medicaid, hospitals will find profits harder to come by. For some, better managing staffing agencies and using data to drive staffing decisions will do the trick. For others, outsourcing workforce management functions or re-evaluating managed care contracts will be sufficient to reign-in cost centers and boost profits. hospital staffing softwareStaffing, a healthcare employer's single largest expense, is probably where hospital cost reductions can affect profits most quickly. Patient census data and the benchmarking of hours worked per case allow for the flexible and accurate scheduling of part timers and travelers. This reduces staff down time, heightens productivity during peak times and is critical to not over or under staffing facilities, both of which adversely impact profits. Tightening vendor policies and diligently tracking the performance of staffing agencies can also improve the look of a P&L. Narrowing vendor relationships to only top performers and holding agencies accountable to competitive bill rates and timely submission of documents will save staffing managers time, money and aggravation; savings that can be converted to [+]

It all started on Florence Nightingale’s Birthday May 12, 1921. A Chicago magazine editor declared National Hospital Day to boost trust in city hospitals in the wake of the Spanish Flu. As more states adopted the event the holiday went weeklong in 1953. As you know, National Hospital Week is about awareness. It’s a reminder of the important role hospitals play in fostering community health, giving the sick hope and bringing new lives into the world. Without hospitals in America, it’s scary to think where we’d be. During this year’s “Champions of Care” event, celebrated by hospitals nationwide May 8-14, facility organizers will be reaching out to communities with health & wellness fairs, educational events, open houses, novelties and other promotions and activities to give thanks and encourage families to use hospital facilities. Hospital Week and staffing solutionsFor some hospital administrators, National Hospital Week signifies a "tightening up of the ship." A closer look at efficiencies and workflows, sanitation, patient safety and bedside care. It’s a time to reward top performers and send a message to nurse and referring physician communities that excellence begets recognition at your facility. Until recently, tracking workforce performance was a daunting task. Managers [+]

More healthcare employers hiring temporary medical professionals in wake of recession A recent employment survey conducted by the staffing industry’s leading job board suggests that temporary workers are back in vogue. Twenty-nine percent of companies’ surveyed from February to March said they hired temporary workers in the first quarter of 2011 and 26 percent said they would in the second quarter, reports Staffing Industry Analysts, a firm specializing in workforce management trends. Though the uptick in employment is great news for healthcare staffing agencies, healthcare employers must find an effective means of managing temporary and contract labor, or the inefficient on boarding and off boarding of employees will result in wasted staffing dollars and diminished patient care delivery. healthcare employer The survey, which included 2,800 hiring managers and 5,600 workers across a broad spectrum of industries and company sizes, also showed 28 percent of respondents hiring permanent employees in the first quarter – the biggest increase in three years. "With healthcare reform knocking on everyone’s door, telling hospitals and healthcare employers to ramp up patient safety efforts and increase care quality, a workforce management solution such as the Candidate Direct Marketplace enables administrators to manage both temporary and [+]

You may be familiar with Hospital & Healthcare Networks “Most Wired” survey. It measures the adoption of information technologies by healthcare providers aimed at improving patient care and safety. Now in its twelfth year, the survey has been redesigned to better gauge a provider’s commitment in using analytics and reporting to achieve "meaningful use." Put simply, meaningful use translates to efficiency: the efficient use and sharing of patient care information via electronic health records (EHRs) to enhance outcomes. Though some healthcare employers feel pressured by reform advocates to adopt EHRs prematurely, National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, David Blumenthal, M.D., thinks many hospitals and independent practitioners have been waiting too long. "Can we make these changes expeditiously enough?" Blumenthal said in an interview with H&HN. medication scan for meaningful useThe good news is hospitals and independent healthcare employers are indeed making changes. The H&HN survey proves it over time. In 2006-2010, the number of physicians participating in a closed-loop medication system rose more than 15 percent, greatly diminishing the risk of 'right patient wrong medication.' Over the five-year period 2005-2010, the number of hospitals using barcodes or RFID (radiofrequency identification) technologies to track medications increased a whopping 33 [+]

Bridging gaps in patient care can save lives, experts say. Healthcare employers are deploying web-based workforce management solutions such as vendor management to fill open positions. Vendor Management doubled in 2008-2010 and demand for the technology is expected to continue. BOCA RATON, FL April, 2011 - A nurse staffing report published in the New England Journal of Medicine March 17 demonstrates the importance flexible nurse staffing has on positive patient outcomes. The three-year study, entitled "Nurse Staffing and Inpatient Hospital Mortality" tracked nurse staffing levels across 43 hospital units at a tertiary Magnet facility. Findings showed that when nurses were accurately matched with patient needs shift-by-shift, risk of mortality decreased. "This study demonstrates that hospitals must implement staffing systems that are flexible enough to meet the individual needs of each patient for every shift, every unit and every day, said ANA President Karen A. Daley, PhD, MPH, RN, FAAN. "It shows that nurse staffing should not be viewed as a cost to be minimized, but as a critical factor in producing quality patient outcomes - ultimately saving lives." Sue HigginsHealthcare providers can achieve [+]

Healthcare Employers Report Rising Demand for Contingent Workforce Patient boon and shortage of specialists cause for growth in healthcare staffing Though contingent workers were the first to go when healthcare bottom lines “bottomed out,” many are the first to return, as hospitals reconfigure healthcare staffing needs in the face of economic recovery and lingering uncertainty. Workflows need to be re-evaluated and nurses, physicians and therapists knowledgeable in healthcare information technologies need to be sourced to comply with pending government reform mandates. Just two years ago, millions of newly unemployed Americans lost their healthcare benefits as the worst recession in decades swept the nation.  The demand for medical services declined and margins for some healthcare employers sank below sustainable standards. Pay and hiring freezes were implemented and spend on staffing got so tight that even some of the most seasoned medical specialists lost their jobs. healthcare trackNow by granting 46 million more Americans access to healthcare they never had, healthcare reform promises to repopulate hospital floors and rekindle the demand for acute care and niche medical services. This boon in patient flow will call many back to work and result in modest growth for the healthcare staffing industry in [+]

Experts in the healthcare staffing field know that employers are increasingly in need of staff who are well versed in today's healthcare technology. Electronic medical records, sharing of real-time diagnostics and communications on mobile devices -- seems like there's something new every day. And at the same time that the doctor's office is become more tech-savvy, so are the patients. Searching for healthcare information is now the third most common reason that consumers go online, just behind checking email and general web searches, according to a poll conducted by the Pew Internet Project. Why do consumers search the Internet first for medical information? Same reason they do a lot of things online: it's fast; it's convenient; and it may be less costly than an in-person consult. Robert Bok, Candidate DirectBut, says a study from the New England Journal of Medicine, patients still rely on physicians to sort the good information from the bad. Concurs Robert Bok, Chairman and CEO of Candidate Direct Staffing, "Trained healthcare professionals are still the most trusted source of medical information; an entirely 'virtual' medical practice is still a long way off." In fact, patients' trust in healthcare professionals to explain [+]

Health information technologies are making everyone’s lives better – patients and providers alike. Electronic health and medical records have improved patient safety, 'handoffs' and caregiver communication, and the effective management of informatics has led to cost savings and workflow efficiencies for healthcare providers. Now physical therapists practice on clouds. Though cloud computing is relatively new to the physical therapy and rehabilitation arena, the Internet-based infrastructure is being used effectively by healthcare providers to capture treatment data in real time as care is being administered by therapists. cloud computing for physical therapistsArmed with an iPod, iPad or other cellular device, a physical therapist presses the start application when therapy begins and hits stop when therapy ends. In the interim, details such as medicines, equipment used, treatment methods and related billing information are all recorded. For healthcare providers, cloud computing may be the ultimate in tracking therapist performance, productivity and beside accountability. Cloud computing is defined as a set of virtual servers working in tandem over the Internet. In contrast to grid computing, which divides larger tasks into smaller ones running on parallel systems, cloud computing encompasses a collection of resources, many of which work independently and [+]

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