The benefits of provider orientation in retention and accuracy
By James Heil, Vice President of Recruiting, The Delta Companies
Each quarter, The Delta Companies releases the Customer Experience Index— a metric sent to customers requesting feedback on the services provided by the company. According to feedback from the survey, facility managers have expressed a desire for providers to ramp up quickly and have a comprehensive understanding of policies and procedures within the facility, such as the use of electronic medical records (EMR) and billing requirements. Providers paralleled this desire, requesting better knowledge upfront of facility routines and more in-depth working relationships with other facility employees. This mentality is true of both permanent positions as well as locum tenens openings.
The most effective way to ensure understanding across the board is by establishing a well-executed new hire process for all incoming providers. While most facilities have an orientation process in place for long-term providers, those utilizing locum tenens positions commonly underestimate the value of a full orientation for temporary services. Even with a short-term assignment, it is important to take the time upfront to complete proper provider orientation, so that complications do not arise later. In addition to administrative policies, facilities can introduce locum tenens providers to the organization’s values and culture. Expectations need to be clearly presented prior to the start of an assignment, and incoming providers should also have the opportunity to familiarize themselves with other staff members. The length and depth of each orientation process depends on the needs of a facility, and the complexity of an assignment. For a few helpful tips on constructing the orientation process that fits with the complexity of your organization, check this article in The Standard.
Following an assignment, facilities can also perform an "off-boarding” process, or debriefing. This gives facilities and providers the chance to tie up any loose ends regarding the assignment (i.e. turn in badges, beepers), as well as ensure all documentation is completed, including billing, charting, and any exit procedures specific to completing the assignment. This practice will eliminate incomplete or incorrect charting to ensure that billing and facility reimbursement procedures are accurately submitted.