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20 People Improving Healthcare

Thumbs Up Business 20 People Improving Healthcare

Thumbs up to everyone out there who makes healthcare better!

Health Leaders Media shared an interesting list of 20 people improving healthcare with a recent post, “20 People Who Make Healthcare Better.”

The list includes a picture, bio, and interview with each of the 20 chosen, who span all aspects of healthcare. Included in the list are nurses, physicians, researchers, executives, providers, payers, watchdogs, innovators, and even patients.

According to Health Leaders Media, this year’s Health Leaders 20 were chosen for “their efforts to make a difference in healthcare. Their stories are sometimes tinged with struggles or challenges, but always, ultimately, with success.”

The list includes the following 20 people improving healthcare:

  • Otis Brawley, MD, Chief Medical Officer, American Cancer Society, Atlanta, GA
  • Anne Wojcicki, CEO, 23andME, Mountain View, CA
  • Tom X. Lee, MD, CEO, One Medical Group, San Francisco, CA
  • Steve Simonin, President/CEO, Iowa Specialty Hospitals and Clinics, Clarion, IA
  • Bryan Coffey, CEO/CFO, Hamilton County Hospital, Syracuse, KS
  • Rebecca Katz, Author, Director, The Healing Kitchens Institute, Bolinas, CA   
  • Lee Aase, Director, Center for Social Media, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN
  • Roxana Reyna, RN, Skin and Wound Care Specialist, Driscoll Children’s Hospital, Corpus Christ, TX
  • Rushika Fernandopulle, MD, Co-founder/CEO, Iora Health, Cambridge, MA
  • Andrea Ippolito, PhD Student, MIT, Cambridge, MA
  • Derek C. Angus, MD, MPH, Chair of Critical Care Medicine, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Pittsburgh, PA
  • José Ramón Fernández-Peña, MD, MPA, Director, Welcome Back Initiative, San Francisco, CA
  • Ellen Goodman, Columnist, Institute for Healthcare Improvement, Cambridge, MA
  • Sam Foote, MD, Internist, Phoenix VA Health Care System, Phoenix, AZ
  • Manny Sethi, MD, Orthopedic Trauma Surgeon, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, TN
  • Cole Galloway, PT, PhD, Professor of Physical Therapy, University of Delaware, Newark, DE
  • Charles Kennedy, MD, Chief Population Health Officer, Healthagen, San Francisco, CA
  • Peter Semczuk, DDS, MPH, Vice President of Clinical Services, Montefiore Medical Center, The Bronx, NY
  • Ed Damiano, PhD, Associate Professor of Biomedical Engineering, Boston University, Boston, MA
  • Bruce Ribner, MD, Infectious Disease Specialist, Emory University Hospital, Atlanta, GA

Click here to check out the list and full bios.

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Celebrating Allied Health Professionals Week

Allied Health Pros Week Celebrating Allied Health Professionals Week

Share this great contest with your Allied Health Professionals, and give them the chance to share their unique stories!

Many hospitals, facilities, and agencies celebrate Nurses Week and Travel Nurses Day each year. Such occasions provide a wonderful chance to recognize the hard work of your staff and a great opportunity to celebrate them and make them feel special. And, as research indicates, a fulfilled, appreciated staff is a more productive staff. 

Well, this week, November 3-7, comes another great opportunity to celebrate your staff — by celebrating Allied Health Professionals Week!

The term “Allied Health Professionals” covers more than 200 specific careers and each of them has a unique, truly important impact in the healthcare industry. So this year, Medical Solutions decided to go about celebrating Allied Health Professionals Week by letting Allied Health Pros tell their story. At, they can enter their specific title, also sharing why they do what they do and why they love their job.  

In celebration this week, here are a few things your facility could do for its Allied Health Pros:

  • Buy lunch or some other gift for them
  • Create and post signs recognizing the occasion
  • Make cards for each of them that recognize the occasion
  • Make a point to verbally wish them a Happy Allied Health Professionals Week — whether in an assembly or individually

How you celebrate can vary; the main thing is recognizing and celebrating Allied Health Professionals Week and thanking them for all they do! Making a point to do so can go a long way when it comes to morale.

Also, don’t forget to send them to where each respondent will be entered into a drawing to win one of the following prizes:     

  • Grand Prize — Amazon Fire HD 7 Tablet ($174 value) that comes with a one-year Amazon Prime membership, plus a $100 Amazon gift card
  • Second Prize — $150 gift card to Zappos
  • Third Prize — $50 gift card to Tafford Uniforms and Scrubs

We hope your facility and staff have a great time celebrating Allied Health Professionals Week! 

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Halloween in the Hospital

A recent post from Staffing Industry Analysts’ The Staffing Stream discusses risks associated with celebrating Halloween at the office, or, in the case of healthcare, at the facility or hospital.

Halloween Candy Halloween in the Hospital

Make Halloween in the hospital full of treats and free of tricky situations!

When it comes to planning and executing Halloween in the hospital or other healthcare facility, what should administrators and management consider to make sure everything goes well?

Here are some tips inspired by The Staffing Stream and other ideas on how to best celebrate Halloween in the hospital:

Do Have a Some Kind of Celebration

Whether it’s a party, letting people wear costumes, buying candy or lunch for the unit, or whatever — do something to recognize that it is a holiday. It’s really good for your facility culture and staff morale to do something special to enjoy the day.    

Don’t Insist on Participation

Make both attendance of any gatherings and wearing a costume voluntary. None of your staff should feel forced into the experience or participating in something they may not care for or believe in.  

Do Insist on Safe Costumes

Be sure to communicate that professionalism and dress code don’t necessarily take a holiday just because it’s a holiday. This will help lower the possibility of inappropriate costumes, inappropriate remarks, and other such issues that could blow up into major problems. This is also key in a hospital in terms of patient safety — you want to avoid any costumes or celebrations that could endanger patients or exacerbate a condition.  

Do Have a Clear Idea

Your best defense against any issues is to attempt to anticipate and interrupt them. Make sure to have a clear idea — and to communicate it to all employees — of how things will unfold on Halloween. Try to think through how things might unfold and recall any issues from past events in order to achieve this.   

Do Communicate with Your Staff

As mentioned above, be sure to communicate thoroughly with all staff. Make sure they are well aware of all information regarding a celebration, as well as their employer’s expectations of them.

We hope these tips will help all involved enjoy a very happy Halloween in the hospital! 

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2014 ANA Staffing Conference

Time Sheet 2014 ANA Staffing Conference

The 2014 ANA Staffing Conference can help improve your facility’s patient outcomes with optimum staffing strategies and solutions.

The 2014 ANA Staffing Conference will be held soon, November 4-5, 2014, in New Orleans, Louisiana. The theme this year is “Creating Optimal Staffing Through Innovation.”

The objective of the conference is to provide applicable, real-world strategies to implement to improve staffing at your hospital. As nurses and administrators at all levels know, staffing properly is a HUGE factor when it comes to a facility’s success, work environment, and patient outcomes.

Some of the takeaways of the 2014 ANA Staffing Conference, according to website, will be:

  • Use available technology to better align staffing with demand.
  • Apply strategies and metrics to drive successful innovation.
  • Employ key competencies and skill mixes in managing staffing in real time.
  • Re-examine your staffing model and take the first steps to adopt a fresh approach.
  • Gain new ideas on how to maximize the value of your staffing committee.
  • Ensure appropriate staffing levels in times of crisis.
  • Communicate effectively with the C Suite to ensure that you have the appropriate resources.

2014 ANA Staffing Conference Speakers

Several leading industry experts will speak, including:

Chris McCarthy, MPH, MBA, will talk about how to “Fuel Evidence-Based Design Through Innovation.” McCarthy has spent 18 years working with Kaiser Permanente, focusing on the realities of nurse work settings and the optimization of time spent with patients. He’s created strategies and solutions to enhance both nurse and patient experiences, including models for safer medication administration and better shift changes for nurses.    

Linda H. Aiken, PhD, RN, FAAN, FRNC, will deliver the talk “Optimal Staffing = Optimal Outcomes.” Aiken is the Claire M. Fagin Leadership Professor in Nursing, Professor of Sociology, and Director of the Center for Health Outcomes and Policy Research at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. She is known for her research efforts regarding the healthcare workforce and healthcare quality, with a focus on the impact of nursing care on patient outcomes. Much of her work substantiates a direct relationship between good work environments for nurses and improved patient outcomes.   

Beatrice J. Kalisch, PhD, RN, FAAN will present on “Missed Nursing Care — What Can You Learn.” Kalisch was the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies 2013-2014 Distinguished Nurse Scholar in Residence. She is a noted author, educator, and researcher, focusing on nursing systems, nursing teamwork, policy, and the completion of standard nursing care.    

Approximately a dozen other noteworthy nurses, nurse educators, researchers, hospital administrators, and other industry experts are also confirmed to speak, as of this post.

Click here to learn more about the 2014 ANA Staffing Conference.    

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2014 Healthcare Staffing Summit

HSS2 2014 Healthcare Staffing Summit

The 2014 Healthcare Staffing Summit is this week!

Staffing Industry Analysts’ 2014 Healthcare Staffing Summit is finally (almost) here!

The annual summit is being held starting next week, September 8-10, at the Sheraton Dallas Hotel in Dallas. This year will focus on “The Challenge of Execution.” It’s all about attaining goals, creating effective strategies, and making your organization the best it can be.

Liz Wiseman, author of the Wall Street Journal bestseller Multipliers: How the Best Leaders Make Everyone Smarter, is the 2014 Healthcare Staffing Summit keynote speaker. She is also President of the Wiseman Group, a Silicon Valley-based research and development firm. 

Beyond Wiseman’s speech, there will be all kinds of excellent presenters and opportunities for growth, engagement, and networking.

Are you attending this year’s summit? If so, what are you most looking forward to? Let us know in the comments — and have a great time in Dallas!    

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Why Working with Firms with Great Recruiters Matters

iStock 000006207278XSmall Why Working with Firms with Great Recruiters Matters

Why Working with Firms with Great Recruiters Matters!

Blogs and other healthcare staffing resources repeatedly advise Travel Nurses and other temporary healthcare providers that the most important thing they can do for their careers is to find a professional, trustworthy recruiter to help shepherd them through the industry.

For healthcare staffing firms, the flipside of that is obvious: To remain competitive and attract the best talent, you must hire excellent recruiters!

In fact, the 2014 Healthcare Staffing Summit will host a session titled “Recruit, Reward, Retain: The 3 R’s to Support Hiring the Best Recruiters and Retaining Them.”

Obviously, a session like that will provide a ton of insight on the topic, but why is that important to a facility?   

To take things one step further, as a facility, you want to make sure that you are working with healthcare staffing companies that hire and retain the best recruiters in the business. Like attracts like, so it stands to reason that the best recruiters and Travelers will flock to the companies that treat them the best. Those are the companies that you want your facilities to be working with!

Furthermore, Travelers are happiest — and, in turn, most effective on the job! — when their personal and professional needs are met.

For example, consider the impact on job performance of a Traveler who was provided excellent company-provided housing versus one who was not and is struggling to remedy their housing misfortune with a non-responsive and/or unprofessional recruiter. The difference is huge! And it will make a huge difference in your facility.

Another reason why an agency’s recruiter quality is so important to a facility is so that everything is as a Traveler was promised. A Traveler can be pretty furious and could potentially direct that towards your hospital’s administration or even other staff members if an unseemly recruiter misrepresents the situation that he or she will be going into.

Facilities understand the importance of quality healthcare Travelers, but it just as important to consider why working with firms with great recruiters matters. 

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Best Hospitals 2014-2015

Gold Star Best Hospitals 2014 2015

The best hospitals in the U.S. get a gold star!

U.S. News and World Report has just released its list of the best hospitals 2014-2015.

According to their website, “Out of nearly 5,000 hospitals evaluated for the 2014-15 U.S. News rankings, just 17 made the cut for the Honor Roll.”

In order to be eligible, hospitals needed to score near the top in no less than six (out of 16) medical specialties, and could earn up to two “Honor Roll” points in each specialty category.

The Top 10 are:

10. Northwestern Memorial in Chicago

9. Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston

8. UCSF Medical Center in San Francisco

7. Hospitals of the University of Pennsylvania-Penn Presbyterian in Philadelphia

6. New York-Presbyterian University Hospital of Colombia and Cornell in New York

5. UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles

4. Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland

3. Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore

2. Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston

1. Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN

Click here to see the slideshow and check out all of the hospitals, as well as a breakdown of the specialties they scored highest in. 

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Federal Nurse Staffing Bill Backed by ANA

Number 1 Federal Nurse Staffing Bill Backed by ANA

Safety in Numbers: New Safe Nurse Staffing Legislation Could Have In-Hospital Committees Setting Staffing Levels

The American Nurses Association has provided input for and is backing newly proposed legislation that would require each unit to create and publicly report staffing plans.    

Last month, on May 15, the Registered Nurse Safe Staffing Act of 2014 was introduced as Senate Bill 2353. It’s a continuation/companion bill to the slow-moving H.R. 1821 — the RN Safe Staffing Act of 2013. Democratic Senator Jeff Merkley of Oregon sponsored the 2014 legislation.

Unlike California’s specifically mandated nurse-to-patient ratios, and the similar scope of nurse staffing legislation efforts underway in Massachusetts, the Registered Nurse Safe Staffing Act of 2014, doesn’t intend to specify staffing levels or nurse-to-patient ratios, but rather would simply require staffing levels to be formally decided on within each unit, with the results of such decisions available publicly.

Under the bill, hospitals would be required to form committees to establish nurse staffing plans. Committees would be required to be comprised of, at minimum, 55% direct care nurses, with the remainder committee members being selected at the hospital’s discretion. Some examples of other potential committee members have been hospital or nurse administrators, doctors, and stakeholders, for example.

The decided upon staffing plans would be determined for each unit and shift, and would be established based upon a variety of factors, including, but not limited to:

  • The experience/certifications/skills of nurses working a unit
  • Number of support staff available in a unit (as well as their background/skill)
  • Physical and technological resources within a unit
  • Quantity of patients in a unit, as well as patients’ conditions

Those in favor of the legislation believe that it threads the needle of doing something about improving nurse staffing ratios, while also avoiding a “one-size-fits all” attitude that might ignore each facility, unit, and shift’s unique staffing needs.

“What works in a rural hospital in my hometown [in North Dakota] may not be the same thing in an urban trauma center. It allows flexibility and it also allows buy-in,” Jerome Mayer, associate director, Department of Government Affairs at the ANA, told Health Leaders Media.

Mayer also commented on the part of the bill that would require the public reporting of the established staffing plans.

“We as consumers of healthcare are getting smarter about the delivery of care,” Mayer told Health Leaders Media. “If you’re able to compare the staffing levels … you’re probably going to go to the one that has a better ratio of nurses to patients.”    

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2014 Healthcare Staffing Summit Save the Date

Liz Wiseman 2014 Healthcare Staffing Summit Save the Date

Liz Wiseman, author of “Multipliers” and President of the Wiseman Group, will be the keynote speaker at the 2014 Healthcare Staffing Summit.

Early warning for Staffing Industry Analysts’ 2014 Healthcare Staffing Summit, which will be held September 8-10, 2014, at the Sheraton Dallas Hotel in Dallas.

This year’s keynote speaker will be Liz Wiseman, author of the Wall Street Journal bestseller Multipliers: How the Best Leaders Make Everyone Smarter.

Wiseman is an effective teacher of leadership who has instructed executives worldwide. She is also President of the Wiseman Group, a Silicon Valley-based research and development firm.  

According to Staffing Industry Analysts, “Some of her recent clients include: Apple, Dubai Bank, Genentech, Nike, PayPal, and Twitter. Liz has been listed on the Thinkers50 ranking and named one of the top 10 leadership thinkers in the world.”

In addition to Wiseman’s speech, there will be a variety of other interesting sessions and networking events.

Register by June 6, 2014 to receive early bird rates. Click here for more info on the conference.

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How Facilities are Celebrating Nurses Week 2014

Celebration Cake How Facilities are Celebrating Nurses Week 2014

How is your facility celebrating Nurses Week?

Nurses are a crucial part of a hospital, and once a year, from May 6-12, we celebrate nurses’ hard work and importance in healthcare with Nurses Week.

This national celebration ends on Florence Nightingale’s birthday, and is an excellent time and way for facilities to show their staff of nursing professionals how much they care. Even a small gesture during Nurses Week can mean a lot to your nurse staff!

A Health Leaders Media article “How 5 Top Hospitals Are Observing Nurses Week” showcased a lot of great ways a facility can honor its nurses. Here are some ways that a few top facilities are celebrating Nurses Week 2014:

Cleveland Clinic in Ohio was doing Panera gift cards, a multimedia “thank you” campaign for nurses, personalized eCards, free breakfast/lunch/dinner and dessert to units on all shifts, an awards ceremony, discounted Major League Baseball tickets, and more.

In Baltimore, Johns Hopkins Hospital offered its nurse staff free tickets and transportation to the premiere of The American Nurse: Healing America, a documentary which actually stars one of their own, a big bullpen party and ballgame, and the Tenth Annual Hopkins Nursing Charity Golf Outing on May 12.

Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston is hosting a staff nurse breakfast and high tea, as well as a series of cool lectures, awards, and more.

The Mayo Clinic in Minnesota is giving all of its nurses a free copy of Arlene Keeling’s new book The Nurses of Mayo Clinic: Caring Healers. Keeling will be on campus offering presentations on the book.    

New York’s Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center was hosting breakfasts and lunches all week long, bringing in a speaker, Mark Lazenby, who will talk about spirituality in palliative and cancer nursing, and more.

No matter what it is, be sure your hospital does something special for your nurses this week — even if it’s just a big, heartfelt THANK YOU. And, you can also direct your nurse staff to join in the fun contests and other cool stuff going on in celebration of Nurses Week over at        

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