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Employees Are Hospitals' Greatest Commodity in Patient Access

Dom Nicastro, for HealthLeaders Media, October 27, 2009

With the high staff turnover in patient access departments, employers need to seek out ways to provide as much motivation as they can offer.

Michael Friedberg, in the HCPro book Staff Competency in Patient Access, wrote, "When talking to my colleagues throughout the access community, I've found that the one common challenge—regardless of the size of the hospital, type of hospital, or location—is finding, training, motivating, and retaining good, qualified staff members to work in patient access."

With all the effort that goes into finding and training reliable patient access staff members, many managers ask themselves, "Why not put a little more effort into creating an incentive program for those staff members?"

It can take a lot of work on the front end to devise a reasonable plan that an administration will approve, but if done right, an incentive program could prove to be effective not only in retaining good staff, but ultimately as a cost benefit for the facility.

Albany (NY) Medical Center took it one step further recently. Its leaders are not only rewarding employees for good work, but are putting an emphasis on asking them what they need in order to make their jobs better.

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