Medical Solutions Announces 2015 Traveler of the Year, Service That Inspires, and Recruiters of the Year Award Winners
Once again this year, the winners of Medical Solutions’ Traveler of the Year and Service That Inspires Award winners are excellent representatives of the above and beyond, quality nurses staffed through Medical Solutions!
At this time we also honor Recruiter of the Year winners, as it’s our awesome Career Consultants who work so hard to recruit the best nurses out there and to help advise and guide them through their journeys — caring not solely about placements, but also about quality placements that are a good mutual fit for both facility and Traveler!
So, without further ado, here are the 2015 winners:
Traveler of the Year
The Traveler of the Year is chosen from our pool of 12 Traveler of the Month winners from throughout the year, who are chosen based upon their perfect hospital evaluations. So, this is truly a best of the best situation.
The 2015 Traveler of the Year award went to the wonderful Barbara H.! Barb is truly the bee’s knees and is so good at her job that she was awarded Traveler of the Month awards in both 2014 and 2015. In fact, in May 2014 we got the chance to surprise Barb in person when she visited our Omaha office. Check it out — but do watch your volume control, the cheers got pretty loud for Barb!
Barb has 33 years of nursing experience, with expertise in ICU/ER, Home Health, Hospice, and PACU. She first started Travel Nursing in the late ’80s and she enjoys traveling with her canine companions, Kona and Lucy.
“I love the challenge of coming to a new area and hospital and learning their processes,” says Barb. “It keeps my brain young.”
She also loves her recruiter, Ronnie E., and the feeling is mutual!
“Barb always gets great reviews from hospitals and personnel,” he says. “You can just tell by talking with her that she really cares about her job. We have a mutual trust and respect for one another. I LOVE having Barb on the team. She is definitely an MVP in my book.”
In addition to major bragging rights, Barb was awarded a Sonos Play 1 Bluetooth Speaker, a $50 Amazon gift card, and lunch catered in for her and her unit. Thanks again for all your hard work, Barb!
Service That Inspires Award
This award is reserved for a Traveler with a great story of service on the job as a Travel Nurse. Our 2015 Service That Inspires Award winner is Sara O.! She also won a Sonos Play 1 Bluetooth Speaker, a $50 Amazon gift card, and lunch catered in for her and her unit.
Sara is an oncology nurse who went above and beyond for a patient in Seattle last year — even going as far as shaving her head in solidarity. Here’s Sara’s amazing story in her own words:
“I was working in Seattle and had a 20-year-old kid with lymphoma. She always had the best attitude and we instantly bonded. She would bring some of her family members and sometimes her boyfriend and we always had a good time while she was getting her treatments. Well, one day she came in to my clinic and told me she was starting to lose her hair. I told her that she needed to have a shaving party and invite all her family and friends over and shave off her hair. Then I said that if she decided to have a shaving party, I would come and she could shave my head first … so that’s what we did! On the day of the shaving party, we took some before and after pictures and three other people besides myself decided to participate. Her boyfriend, her uncle, and a dear family friend that had shoulder length hair. My patient did the honors, shaving my head first, followed by the rest of the participants. She was last; each person took turns and I did the honors of completing the job. It is a day I will always remember, with a patient I will never forget.”
The Medical Solutions team is truly blown away to have such dedicated, caring nurses working for us. It’s an amazing feeling to know we’re providing facilities nationwide with such stellar superstars!
Recruiter of the Year Winners
So, how do we find such amazing nurses as Barb and Sara? Simple. Equally amazing Travel Nurse recruiters — like our 2015 Recruiter of the Year winners Brad B. and Jen L.!
These two awards are chosen based upon a pool of Traveler nominations. While we received so many nominations for our crew of excellent Career Consultant, Jen and Brad rose to the top in 2015. These two dedicated Career Consultants are what Medical Solutions is all about — they use open and honest communication, are always there for their Travelers, and consistently keep in mind what’s best for the Travelers and facilities they serve.
One of Brad’s nominating Travelers said, “Brad is always on your team. He goes above and beyond and makes this a fun, rewarding journey.”
One of Jen’s nominating Travelers said, “Jen has become more than just my recruiter — she is also my friend. She only presents jobs that she knows will fit my needs and interests. She is always ready to answer questions, solve problems, or just let me vent. While I am on assignment she checks on me frequently — I never feel alone.”
As those who handles staffing in hospitals know, a happy nurse is a productive nurse and one that is free to give the best patient care possible. Thanks again, Brad and Jen, for helping Travelers build great careers and for helping hospitals get superior nurses for their staffing needs!
Once again a study has found that the better a facility’s nurse staffing levels, the lower patient mortality is as a result.
This most recent study was published this week in JAMA Surgery. Data was drawn from nearly 26,000 Medicare general surgery patients who had been treated between 2004 and 2006 in Illinois, Texas, and New York hospitals. It found that the better staffed with nurses a hospital was, the less likely it was that a patient would die or be sent to ICU.
Beyond the benefits to patient care and mortality rates, the study found that the total cost of surgery stayed around $27,000 regardless of if it was a higher or lower staffed hospital.
Lead study author Dr. Jeffrey Silber, Director of the Center for Outcomes Research at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia said that hospitals that had staffed better had “a formula for excellent value.”
While the debate over nurse staffing certainly continues, it is helpful to access studies such as the recent JAMA Surgery report to help guide your hospital’s staffing strategies!
The Joint Commission’s 2015 annual report is now available.
“This year’s report summarizes performance data collected during 2014 on 49 accountability measures of care in 12 measure sets — the most diverse set of data ever collected from American hospitals by The Joint Commission for this report,” writes Mark R. Chassin, MD, FACP, MPP, MPH, President and CEO of The Joint Commission.
Big news emerging from the report includes the fact that The Joint Commission will suspend its Top Performers list for 2016, with plans to evaluate the program and resume in 2017. The report indicates that over the past couple of years there have been a lot of changes to the performance measurements for hospitals.
“Due to the evolving national performance measure environment particularly within the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services — we have decided to place the current Top Performer program in hiatus for a year to be reevaluated,” writes Chassin. “While we won’t be recognizing Top Performer hospitals in the fall of 2016, I am confident that hospitals will continue to improve, and that in 2017, we will return with a refreshed program that will better fit the evolving national measure environment while supporting Top Performers and hospitals on track to achieving this recognition.”
In 2015, 3,300 hospitals submitted data for the 2015 report and 31.5% (or 1,043 hospitals) landed on the Top Performers list. The 2015 list utilized 49 accountability measures as criteria for evaluating hospital performance on evidence-based care processes.
Click here to see a full PDF of The Joint Commission’s Annual Report for 2015.
With more than 200 various Allied Health Professional positions making an impact in healthcare and — undoubtedly — at your facility, it is a great idea for the good of your hospital culture to celebrate Allied Health Professionals Week 2015!
Allied Health Professionals Week will be observed November 1-7, 2015. It’s a great opportunity to reach out with a card, a banner, or even just a pat on the back and some kind words, to let your Allied Health staff know that you appreciate everything they contribute to quality patient care.
Medical Solutions is celebrating the occasion with a fun, interactive contest.
Allied Health Pros are invited to visit MedicalSolutions.com/AlliedWeek and share their title and favorite part of their job — for the chance to win one of five $100 Amazon gift cards.
Click here to learn more and be sure to share this contest with your Allied Health team. I bet they’d be pretty grateful if your heads up helped them win $100!
In keeping with the American Nurses Association’s pronouncement of 2015 as “The Year of Ethics,” the ANA is offering a webinar entitled “Ethical Challenges Facing Nursing Leaders: Your Path to Success.”
The objectives for the webinar are:
- Outlining ethical challenges healthcare/nursing leaders face today
- Teaching how to “leverage the ANA Code of Ethics for Nurses to identify and address elements of safety, quality, and patient care delivery in nursing”
- Advising on how to foster and manage an ethical culture for nursing practices
This ethics webinar for nurse leaders will be offered Wednesday, November 4, 2015, from 1-2 p.m. EST and does offer one contact hour for successful completion.
Hospital leaders and nursing leaders can greatly benefit their culture and the experience of their staff and patients by paying attention to in-house ethical practices.
Click here to learn more about this ethics webinar for nurse leaders and/or to register yourself or your team members.
Travel Nurses Day is coming up Friday, October 9, 2015!
Travel Nurses do a lot to combat the nursing shortage and are there to help with patient ratios and preventing perm staff burnout when facilities need them. Because of their special role within the realm of healthcare, Medical Solutions created Travel Nurses Day as a way to honor and celebrate these very special healthcare professionals.
If you have Travelers working at your facility, you may want to do something nice for them to help celebrate the day. Perhaps buy them lunch, give them cards, or even just say an extra “thank you” and wish them a happy Travel Nurses Day!
You can also recognize Travel Nurses Day 2015 at your facility by sending Travelers to TravelNursesDay.com, where they can play games, takes quizzes, and enter contests to win prizes from a pot of more than $2,000, which includes:
1 – $500 Cash Grand Prize
3 – Fitbit Charge HR ($150 value each)
3 – $100 hotel credits, courtesy of Travelers Haven
Your Travel Nurses are sure to be delighted and impressed that you’ve taken the time to share this information with them. We wish a Happy Travel Nurses Day to you and all of your Travelers!
Click here to visit TravelNursesDay.com.
The Affordable Health Care Act, or Obamacare, as it’s often known, seems to be doing some good for the bottom line of America’s hospitals.
According to an article in Forbes’ Pharma & Healthcare section, “As hospital operators begin to report second period earnings — the sixth consecutive quarter of new revenue from once uninsured patients — the number and size of unpaid medical bills continues to fall thanks to the Affordable Care Act.”
The article goes on the share a “snapshot” of the trend using Universal Health Services as an example.
Click here to read the full Forbes article.
Just a few weeks left until Travelers Conference 2015 in Las Vegas, Nevada September 13-15!
This annual event is aimed at traveling healthcare professionals, allowing them to meet and network with other travelers, companies, and industry experts and leaders. There’s a professional, educational, and social component to Trav Con. Many of the sessions even qualify for CEU credits, so it’s a great opportunity for Travelers to come away even stronger at their work.
Speakers and other participants at Travelers Conference 2015 include RNs, nurse leaders and educators, staffing company reps, writers, travel industry experts, lawyers and tax experts specific to healthcare travel, and more.
If you or someone from your hospital leadership wants to learn more about healthcare travelers and staffing companies this is an excellent and affordable opportunity to do so. And also, Vegas!
Click here to learn more about the Travelers Conference.
If you do attend, make sure to stop by and say hi to Medical Solutions at our booth. We will have a very special, fun surprise that you won’t want to miss!
As a hospital leader, you know better than anyone how important it is to quality patient care for nurses and other healthcare professionals to be properly educated — especially in a rapidly evolving healthcare landscape.
Well, let me introduce you to three future nurses to watch: our Nurses of Tomorrow 2015 Scholarship winners!
Shannon H., Junior
Marc G., Sophomore
Jenna M., Senior
In an effort to help develop and support the next generation of nurses, nurse leaders, and nurse educators, Medical Solutions awards our Nurses of Tomorrow Scholarship as a part of our annual Nurses Week celebration.
This year, in partnership with Nebraska Methodist College, our RN to BSN Academy partner, Medical Solutions awarded three $2,000 scholarships to help support our winners as they strive to be the best of the next generation’s healthcare professionals.
Part of the consideration of winners included an essay answering the question: What does being a patient advocate mean to you? Here is an excerpt from winner Shannon’s essay:
“ … [Patient advocacy] involves recognizing and responding ethically and compassionately to those needs and concerns that are voiced, as well as those that go left unsaid. A nurse not only treats physical pains, but also helps to heal emotional wounds. He or she must strive to develop true empathy, to share in the joys and sorrows of each and every person. In doing so, patients can find hope and meaning in their suffering. An advocate does not merely speak on behalf of the patient, but forms a connection with them. This includes relaying information, so that those being cared for have a complete understanding of their physical condition and what is involved in their treatment, as well as being a friendly and familiar presence, where patients and families will feel safe sharing their concerns. A patient advocate’s role is to treat the patient as an individual with unique needs, and essentially, putting a human face on healthcare.”
Click here to read more from our Nurses of Tomorrow 2015 Scholarship winners’ essays. Who knows, in a few years these people could be your star Travel Nurses!
U.S. News & World Report has announced its rankings for best hospitals 2015-2016.
“We sifted through data for nearly 5,000 hospitals and results from surveys of more than 140,000 physicians to rank the best centers in 16 adult specialties from cancer to urology. Death rates, patient safety and hospital reputation were a few of the many factors we considered. Only 137 hospitals were nationally ranked in a specialty. The Honor Roll features 15 Best Hospitals that scored near the top in at least six specialties,” the publication wrote of this year’s process.
This year’s Honor Roll was, in order from 1-15:
- Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts
- Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota
- Third place tie between John Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland and UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles, California
- Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland, Ohio
- Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts
- New York-Presbyterian University Hospital of Colombia and Cornell in New York, New York
- UCSF Medical Center in San Francisco, California
- Hospitals of the University of Pennsylvania-Penn Presbyterian in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
- Barnes-Jewish Hospital/Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri
- Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago, Illinois
- NYU Langone Medical Center in New York, New York
- UPMC-University of Pittsburgh Medical Center in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
- Duke University Hospital in Durham, North Carolina
- Stanford Health Care-Stanford Hospital in Stanford, California
Click here to read more about the best hospitals for 2015-2016. U.S. News & World Report also did rankings by specialty and for children’s hospitals specifically.
Specialties ranked include:
- Cardiology & Heart Surgery
- Diabetes & Endocrinology
- Ear, Nose, & Throat
- Gastroenterology & GI Surgery
- Neurology & Neurosurgery
What do you think of the rankings for the best hospitals 2015-2016? Did your facility make the list this year? Please share any comments you have!