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Managing an on-call ER doctor schedule

Posted on 11/13/2014 by Elizabeth in category: scheduling software articles
ER doctors work long hours, sometimes up to 27 hours in a shift or more. This can lead to high job dissatisfaction and burnout among physicians. It might seem simplistic, but managing physician scheduling and having adequate on-call scheduling coverage can make a world of difference for your physicians, their performance, and your turnover rate in emergency medicine.

Why is Automation So Important for Emergency Medicine Scheduling?

While some people complain about automation in terms of phasing out humans, that isn’t the way it should work when it comes to shift scheduling. It isn’t replacing the need for an actual person on the job.

Rather, it’s freeing up time for that person to attend to more productive ventures for your emergency department than fielding calls, documenting schedule requests, and trying to sift through various preferences, requirements, requests, and more for the ER doctor schedule process.

Automation means that all the details are handled with software. From the creation of the schedule for staffing and on-call needs, to sending out the finished schedule to all relevant physicians and medical staff, automation is critical. This includes handling vacation requests, shift preferences, schedule changes, and so much more.

Automation is the key in business today, While your business is healing people, hospitals are most certainly businesses. For every step in the process you can automate, the more profitable your business runs.

The Healthcare Law and Emergency Medicine

Times were challenging in emergency rooms across the country before the Affordable Care Act went into effect. Now that it’s here, emergency rooms are feeling the pinch of patients who have gone years without medical treatment, people who have no regular physician and turn to the emergency room instead, in addition to the usual people who have been coming to the emergency room for routine and emergency treatment for years.

Hospitals are beginning to rely on on-call physician more and more to fill in coverage gaps for busy shifts that cannot be predicted based on previous years’ experiences because the parameters for people seeking emergency care have changed.

Then there’s the shift from physicians’ offices to focus on payment at the time of visits that has many people visiting the emergency room out of fear of not being able to make the full payment, or out of the concern that they will be turned away elsewhere. Despite the healthcare law, there are still many uninsured Americans who need medical attention every day.

Emergency medicine scheduling must take all these things into account. Scheduling software helps to ensure your ER doctor schedule builds in adequate on-call physicians to cover any gaps in physician demand without having the person in charge of physician scheduling asking for a three day recovery period after every schedule goes out.

Now is the time to focus your attention on building a better on-call schedule for your emergency department. Automation through emergency medicine scheduling software is the key to making that happen.

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