Home Care

Placing a love one in a nursing home can be a traumatic experience for the entire family with concerns about the care and attention they will receive. Imagine if those concerns were ease, simply by some changes in the way; so the schedules are done for the staff at that facility. The work schedules for employees in these highly stressful jobs can have a significant impact ultimately on the care patients receive,” said Ellen Ernst Kossek, the Basil S.

The Better patient care

Organizations should strive to do a better job in taking into account the needs of workers when creating schedules; which will lead to less stress, better patient care and less turnover. Kossek and her co authors including Purdue Krannert School of Management; so doctoral student Lindsay Mechem Rosokha and Carrie Leana; examine work life balance issues and schedules for eight nursing home facilities in the United States.

Their work appears online in Work and Occupations. The study was partially fund by the U.S. National Institutes of Health as part of the Work, Family and Heath Network Study. They find three main ways that the facilities approach worker scheduling. In the “Sharing the Pain” method the organization randomly assign schedules without regard to merit or length of employment.

The “Reverse Status Rotation” method involve a scheduling approach; hence where first line managers were require to fill in for their direct reports; so who unexpectedly miss part or all of their shifts. For the “Work Life Needs” method, the organizations took a more improvise approach; so experiment with different ways to fill in schedules to balance the needs of the workers with patient coverage.

The ongoing adjustments

This last method may produce the best results for workers, the facility and the patients,” Kossek said. “Based on this, they suggest that work schedule patching approaches, which are the ongoing adjustments made to plug scheduling holes after schedules are posted, take into account how to effectively manage last minutes schedule changes on the ground in ways that support employee’s work-life scheduling by motivating coverage by co-workers who would like to work the schedule.

Kossek said the research suggested that similar approaches could work well for not just health care, but many industries with scheduled hourly workers ranging from retail, childcare, manufacturing, to police and security. Kossek said an initial analysis of the data from their study also showed a suggestive link between better work-life scheduling in nursing home facilities and fewer pressure ulcers in patients.

Pressure ulcers can develop from patients not being move often; so just staying in the same position in bed, or not keeping the skin clean and dry.” Kossek said. It seems from the research that employees with better scheduling options are able to experience less strain and be able to be more focus on patient care. Kossek has receive worldwide attention for her research on work life balance and has work with the Purdue Research Foundation on some of her studies.