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How HR and nursing can move beyond traditional systems

December 9, 2019 By Erica Doherty

Does your hair still look like it did in the 80’s? Then why would your HR system?

A lasting impression
My colleague, who is an RN, shared a story that left a lasting impression. She was working in the critical care wing of a hospital and one of her patients was going through ventilator weaning. If you’re not familiar, this is a process where the patient’s ventilator is removed periodically to allow the patient to breath on their own, coupled with some moderate activity.

Her patient wanted to move to the recliner, which was supposed to be a 2-person assist, but he was getting restless and there was no one around to help her. Like many nurses in her situation, her goal was to make the patient most comfortable, and she decided to do it alone. She began the process of removing the vent but could not find the appropriately sized cap for his trach. She proceeded, selecting a slightly larger cap that did not fit perfectly, but seemed secure enough. As she moved him to the chair, he coughed, and his fluids covered her face.

A very scary, common experience
This incident required a blood-borne pathogen protocol to be followed. She finished transferring him to the chair and went to wash out her eyes. She searched, knowing there was protocol to be followed, however, she could not locate the policy and procedure. She searched through binder after binder and found nothing. She learned she would need to go for an appointment and have bloodwork done, immediately. She couldn’t find anyone to cover the rest of her shift, so she continued working until her shift was over and made an appointment for the next day.

This was an unfortunate yet memorable experience for my colleague, and of course put the patient under a considerable amount of stress, but thankfully, in the end, they were both okay.

Have you or your teams ever encountered a situation like this one? Lack of supplies? Lack of resources? No idea where the protocols are located? Not enough personnel to cover? Frantically texting and calling for extra hands to come in and relieve?

It makes you wonder, what if the situation could be handled differently? What if you had technology that could track and consolidate all information in one place? If my colleague and the organization she worked for had access to a comprehensive healthcare operations platform, this situation could have been different.

What does a healthcare operations platform offer?
A clinically connected healthcare operations platform with embedded science differs from a traditional enterprise resource planning (ERP) software system as it closes the decision making and efficiency gaps healthcare providers and operators have typically had to bridge themselves. Being clinically connected means enabling caregivers to provide higher quality, more efficient care by breaking down the silos between the ERP and EHR—not just via data integrations, but through delivered patient-focused functionality not feasible without having already combined the clinical and non-clinical data.

Further, here are a few quick examples of how an innovative healthcare operations platform can empower HR and clinical staff:

  • Mobility: Employees in healthcare are not typically sitting at a desk and need access to their human capital management (HCM) technology right from their mobile device. Beyond the basics of viewing a pay stub or requesting time off an employee should be able to easily swap or pick up a shift; log right into their timesheet on their mobile device with geofencing capabilities and have quick access to policies. Better yet, imagine if my colleague could have pulled out her phone and simply asked for the policy on blood-borne pathogens? She would have identified immediately what steps she would need to take and reduced her stress level. This process cannot be cumbersome either as an employee does not have time to log in and out of different systems and deal with many different user experiences in the middle of handling a critical situation.
  • Align Caregivers and Patients: A strong HCM solution will maintain and track all of a clinical employee’s licenses, skills, immunizations, and more. The system should notify the appropriate staff when they need to be renewed. To take it a step further, the system should be able to schedule caregivers based on their qualifications and the needs of the patient using data from the HCM and EHR systems. This will allow more equitable distribution of workloads and more appropriate levels of care. Without adequate staffing levels nurses can face burnout. A recent article cited 78% of nurses feel burnt out while another source said nurses who oversee too many patients run the risk of becoming stressed out and making medical mistakes as a result.
  • Clinical Competency Management: This refers to a system built for healthcare that provides preceptors with the capability for preceptors to validate, through easily accessed checklists, the competencies and skills of clinical staff to maintain compliance and positively impact patient satisfaction.
  • Supply Chain: With a patient-centered supply chain, everything the caregiver needs is there when he or she arrives in the room to take care of the patient and they are assured the items are not recalled. The appropriately sized trach could have been available.

In this scenario, there was an opportunity to prevent, or handle differently, this incident providing a better outcome for my colleague and her patient. The right technology can have a positive impact on your employees and your patients.

Finally, I want to mention that in a recent blog, Chuck Whinney, Sr. Director for Infor Healthcare, invited the Infor strategy and product teams to discuss the various ways Infor software solutions impact patient care. Look for future blogs addressing more on how healthcare can move beyond traditional ERP, technology, and systems.

– Erica Doherty, Industry and Solution Strategy Direction, Infor Healthcare

Filed Under
  • Healthcare
  • Healthcare
  • CloudSuite Healthcare
  • Cloverleaf Integration Suite for clinical interoperability
  • Infor Workforce Management
  • Worldwide
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