COVID-19 and Coverage: 9 Tips to Get Ahead of Potential Staffing Challenges During the Surge

Cross Country Locums
March 17, 2020 08:04 AM (GMT-04:00)
Cross Country Locums News

At Cross Country Locums, we recognize healthcare facilities are faced with mounting pressures due to increasing cases of COVID-19, and we know among the top challenges for administrators is maintaining sufficient staff during this time. Therefore, we would like to share some insight and guidance for decision-makers based on the shifting patterns we’ve recently observed.

We are noticing a tightening supply against an increasing demand for providers. But we are also experiencing outreach from physicians and advanced practice providers who are ready to help.

“It’s during times like these that doing what we do feels incredibly motivating. The response we have received from medical professionals ready to support facilities has been inspirational to us,” Karen Mote, President of Cross Country Locums shared during a recent COVID-19 staff meeting. “Now more than ever we are committed to ensuring our clients and locums medical professionals know we are focused, committed and actively doing our part to ensure facilities have the coverage they sorely need at this time.”

While none of us can predict the outcome of the current coronavirus outbreak with great certainty, we can reasonably expect that demand will continue to outpace supply. With that in mind, here are some suggestions for healthcare administrators to consider as they navigate the pandemic:

  1. Use locums assignments to fill vacancies, to cover quarantines, and to avoid overworking existing staff.
  2. Submit your coverage requests for the next 3-6 months to your staffing agency as soon as possible.
  3. Fill crisis roles first.
  4. Look to fill roles with providers who are based locally, as many are increasingly hesitant about traveling.
  5. Be prepared to offer providers compensation commensurate with surge in demand and limited supply.
  6. Be open to revising terms, such as extension and renewal bonuses, guaranteed hours, etc.
  7. Be ready to make fast hiring decisions.
  8. Streamline your documentation and training processes to ensure rapid onboarding of new providers.
  9. Familiarize yourself with your state’s requirements for licensure and privileging waivers, if any.

We are ready to help.

We have implemented a strategic business continuity plan to ensure you have the support you need. To learn more about our plan or to discuss critical needs for your facility, Contact us.

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