Tag Archives: nicola hawkinson

8 Habits Health Care Practices Should Learn from the Navy SEALS

Healthcare practices can adopt certain behaviors from the military to help not only boost the morale of the office, but also create a more engaged working environment. Follow these eight habits for your practice to operate at the optimal level:
1. Be loyal.
Loyalty to the team starts at the top. Loyalty is about leading by example, providing your team unconditional support, and never throwing a team member under the bus. Member of your team will be loyal to your practice if they feel like they are being appreciated.
2. Put others before yourself.
Go to work every day with the intention to make your team better and offer help to those who need it. People who become overworked and overtired are not productive members of your team. The success of the practice should be a priority for all employees.
3. Be reflective.
Understanding what works for you and what doesn’t is often underappreciated in the workplace. You’re expected to do things according to the way of the practice and that’s fine, but you should reflect on how your behavior and adaptability affect your overall performance.

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Creating the Correct Environment for Medical Staff Retention

Healthcare workers are in high demand and this means healthcare organizations must create environments that encourage them to stay once they’re hired; easier said than done. Lack of advancement opportunities is one of the main reasons people working in healthcare leave jobs; recruiting and retaining healthcare workers depends on developing a nurturing environment where these professionals can thrive.

Most healthcare professionals are more likely to leave jobs when they are unhappy with the office culture or they feel like they can get more experience somewhere else. You have to create reasons for them to stay. Some options include, but are not limited to: In-house skills training, technology training, performance-based incentives and sign-on bonus. Healthcare workers value these programs because they encourage professional development and upward career mobility for all medical staff. The experience they get from your practice should be invaluable to them over the course of their career. You will attract more highly qualified candidates if you are offering employees more than just a paycheck.

Office environments are underrated by most professionals. Medical practices tend to assume that if people are leaving jobs it has more to do with that person than with the structure of the practice. Some people might leave because the job just isn�t what they expected, but other people will leave because of what you aren�t offering them. Medical assistants, nurse practitioners, physicians and receptionists won’t stay if you are unable to offer the kind of atmosphere that ensures a safe, healthy and productive work environment.

Since healthcare changes and evolves your education and training for members of the staff cannot be static. EMR systems will be subject to change especially as the technology advances as well as processes for billing and coding. These changes will affect the entire staff and how you recruit for new candidates. Concurrently, urgent care facilities are becoming more prominent and hospital employment is looking more favorable for physicians; because of this, private practices are having trouble with retention. Instead of scrambling to replace people, look into what you are currently doing and how to make it better. Happy employees don�t go searching for new jobs.

The Importance of Properly Engaging Your Medical Staff

Once you’ve hired the staff for your medical practice you have to make sure that they are engaged in their jobs and day to day responsibilities. Some practices do not take the time to check in with employees and make sure they are interested and staying on task throughout the day. Every employee should feel like they are a valuable member of your team

The practice will be busy throughout the day leaving very little down time for employees so they need clearly defined roles from the onset of employment. Job responsibilities break down into two groups: clinical and non-clinical. Clinical staff should have a set of policies in place for them to follow and non-clinical staff should have their own set of policies as well. The office should run smoothly on a day to day basis. One of the best ways to engage employees is to ask key questions during the interview process to make sure they are going to be a good fit for the practice. The better you know your own practice, the better you will be at marketing it to prospective employees. Provide training for new employees to give them the skills they need to excel and increase value to the practice. Training for employees is highly appreciated and will give them a probationary period where they know they are learning the ins and outs of the practice.

During the interview process you can get a better feel for the type of employees you will be hiring by asking specific questions. Ask them about their accomplishments in their previous positions and the amount of time it took them to complete tasks. You should see if they prefer jobs where they were given a lot of responsibilities or more highly structured positions with more supervision. Employees who are engaged have greater commitment to the practice and they go above and beyond their basic job descriptions. Having weekly staff meetings will increase office morale and keep employees interested in their jobs.

Think of staff meetings as an investment; you want to keep your staff informed about what is going on in each department. Set up an agenda for the meeting in advance so everyone knows what topics you will be covering. Including them when it comes to decisions for the practice is another way to keep staff engaged. Maybe you�re thinking about switching to a new EMR system or about creating a practice website, discuss this with your staff so they can give feedback. Don’t just listen to their feedback; utilize it to better the practice. Be consistent with your communication; employees want to know that if a problem arises you will be able to take care of it in a timely and professional manner.

Keeping employees engaged starts with the hiring process and marketing your practice to the right people. Communicating effectively with clinical and non-clinical staff, scheduling regular team meetings are simple ways to make the office run more efficiently and give every member of your staff the opportunity to be successful.

Make the Most of Your Summer Job Hunt

SpineSearch wants all of its candidates to not give up on their job hunt. In order to do this candidates must keep in mind that just because they’re going on vacation for a week or two does not mean that employers stop looking for people to hire. Don’t fall victim to the lazy days of summer; SpineSearch wants to help you succeed at your next job interview. Here are some reminders to help you during your summer job hunt:
1) Ask Questions During the Interview
You should always do your research on a company before you go on an interview, and when an employer asks you if you have any questions don’t come up empty handed. Ask questions about the culture in the office and if there is a sense of community. Ask the employer well-thought questions that show you care about the company and what your role would be there.
2) Don’t Use an Inappropriate Email Address
If you have to question whether or not your email is appropriate, then it probably isn’t fit for your resume. You can easily make an email address that is specifically for your resume; make it simple and suitable for a potential employer to see.
3) Have Concrete Examples of Prior Work
When an employer asks you about a time when you solved a problem or took a leadership role at your last job, you should be able to site clear examples without hesitation. If you hesitate for too long the employer could think you are making the story up. Before you go on a job interview think about what potential questions an employer might ask and rehearse them with someone.
4) Improve Your Resume
Summer is the perfect time to refresh your resume; SpineSearch offers exclusive help to their candidates to create a resume that will impress any employer. Your Resume should represent a well-organized example of your work history.

Premier Breakthroughs Conference 2012

Premier Breakthroughs Conference 2012
SpineSearch will be attending the Premier Breakthroughs Conference, June 5-7th. Premier Breakthroughs is a knowledge sharing event sponsored by Premier healthcare alliance. Premier brings people, ideas and innovations organized to transform healthcare. SpineSearch is looking forward to sharing new ideas with colleagues and expanding our knowledge of the spine industry. Come visit us at Booth #1008. We hope to see you all there!
SpineSearch will be joining a number of conferences during summer 2012. Here are some important dates to remember:
June 2012:
June 14-16th: Beckers ASC, Chicago, IL
August 2012:
August 13-15th: 2012 Hospital O.R. and Surgery Center Conference, St. Louis MO
August 25th: Spine Specialty Day, St. Louis MO (RN and NP)

SpineSearch LLC Awarded Physician Recruiting Agreement with the Premier Healthcare Alliance

SpineSearch LLC Awarded Physician Recruiting Agreement with the Premier Healthcare Alliance
Dateline February 01, 2012 SpineSearch LLC announced today that it has been awarded a 18-month group purchasing agreement with the Premier healthcare alliance, for its Physician Recruiting. February 01, the new agreement allows Premier members, at their discretion, to take advantage of special pricing and terms pre-negotiated by Premier for Physician Recruiting.

“SpineSearch LLC is honored to have the opportunity to work with one of the finest GPOs, Premier, and its members on Physician Staffing,” said SpineSearch LLC CEO & Founder Nicola Hawkinson. This will allow Premier and SpineSearch to better serve the healthcare providers throughout the United States

SpineSearch will be offering Premier alliance members the ability to tap into our network of Physicians. SpineSearch’s ability to place qualified candidates to specific institutions comes from the clinical backgrounds and qualifications of the SpineSearch team, along with a substantial database of prescreened candidates. CEO and Founder, Nicola Hawkinson, uses her clinical background to expertly find and place candidates for potential employers. SpineSearch has a database filled with thousands of applicants that have pre-screening interviews with a member of the SpineSearch team, and continue on to potential employers. This selection process is what differentiates SpineSearch from other recruitment agencies. Premier members will have the means to pick Physicians that are competent leaders in their field in a seamless process without the worries of negotiating terms and or pricing because of their relationship with Premier.

About the Premier healthcare alliance, Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award recipient
Premier is a performance improvement alliance of more than 2,500 U.S. hospitals and 81,000-plus other healthcare sites using the power of collaboration to lead the transformation to high quality, cost-effective care. Owned by hospitals, health systems and other providers, Premier maintains the nation’s most comprehensive repository of clinical, financial and outcomes information and operates a leading healthcare purchasing network. A world leader in helping deliver measurable improvements in care, Premier has worked with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and the United Kingdom’s National Health Service North West to improve hospital performance. Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Premier also has an office in Washington. http://www.premierinc.com. Stay connected with Premier on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

About Supplier SpineSearch LLC
The SpineSearch mission is steadfast in providing a superior network between highly qualified healthcare professionals, medical specialists, and healthcare facilities. Our vision is to provide a cutting edge network within the medical field and its professionals. We are focused exclusively to the healthcare field and offer a unique level of expertise in the industry. SpineSearch is led by experts in the industry who are knowledgeable about every dimension of the field. We invoke a commitment to those employed in the industry, offering continued education and career building symposiums, focusing on job satisfaction and decreased turnover. A community network of medical professionals dedicated to the future of healthcare. SpineSearch is certified as a women’s business enterprise through the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC), the nation’s largest third party certifier of businesses owned and operated by women in the US. We recognize the commitment to supplier diversity that is embraced by corporations and government agencies today, and we can add diversity to your supply chain. http://www.spine-search.com/ Stay in touch with SpineSearch LLC on FaceBook, Twitter and .. Linkedin

SpineSearch at NASS 2011

SpineSearch at NASS 2011
SpineSearch was on hand last week at the North American Spine Society’s 26th Annual Meeting in Chicago. Nicola Hawkinson, CEO, moderated two discussions: Allied Health Track Session—Healthcare Reform and Beyond, and PA/NP Track Breakout Session—Failed Back and cervical Spine. I was able to take in the Young Spine Surgeons forum for a short time while manning our booth. Thank you to the fellows and attending surgeons who stopped by to meet with me to discuss the job market and practice opportunities. We would also like to thank our clients, and industry colleagues for all of their feedback. We look forward to working with you in the future, and to the NASS meeting in Dallas next year.

SpineSearch receives national certification as Women’s Business Enterprise by the Women’s Presidents’ Educational Organization

PRESS RELEASE

Date August 4, 2011

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Nicola Hawkinson
Office: 646-794-8656
Fax: 212-208-3084
Nicola@spine-search.com

New York, NY – August 4, 2011 – SpineSearch LLC, a business specializing in, recruitment, educational, and marketing services for spine practices, received national certification as a Women’s Business Enterprise by the Women Presidents’ Educational Organization – New York Certification Committee, a regional certifying partner of the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC).

WBENC’s national standard of certification implemented by the Women Presidents’ Educational Organization – New York Certification Committee is a meticulous process including an in-depth review of the business and site inspection. The certification process is designed to confirm the business is at least 51% owned, operated and controlled by a woman or women.

By including women-owned businesses among their vendors, corporations, and government agencies demonstrate their commitment to fostering diversity and the continued development of their supplier/vendor diversity programs.

To learn more about SpineSearch LLC, please visit www.spine-search.com

About SpineSearch LLC
The SpineSearch mission is steadfast in providing a superior network between highly qualified healthcare professionals, spine specialists, and healthcare facilities. Our vision is to provide a cutting edge network within the spine field and its professionals. We are focused exclusively to the field of spine medicine and offer a unique level of expertise in the spine industry.
SpineSearch is an organization that provides recruitment, educational, and marketing services for spine practices. SpineSearch is led by experts in the industry who are knowledgeable about every dimension of the field. We invoke a commitment to those employed in the industry, offering continued education and career building symposiums, focusing on job satisfaction and decreased turnover. A community network of spine professionals dedicated to the future of spine, truly a revolutionary “way of spine”.

About WBENC
The Women’s Business Enterprise National Council is the nation’s largest third party certifier of businesses owned and operated by women in the United States. WBENC is a resource for the more than 700 US companies and government agencies that rely on WBENC’s certification as an integral part of their supplier diversity programs.

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Q & A on How to ensure your practice can compete in the competitive physician recruiting landscape

Hiring a new physician for your practice is more complicated than it used to be

How does the current physician shortage affect medical practices?

Currently employed physicians are working longer hours and have to cover call more frequently — This all equates to higher compensation for recruited physicians, both senior and new.

How many calls does the average graduating resident receive and how does a hiring group compete for those new graduates?

According to MGMA over half of graduating residents receive between 51-100 solicitations. If you work with a hiring firm such as SpineSearch it will bring your practice more attention. SpineSearch attends many national events geared at Residents & Fellows and when they are looking for candidates with a retained job in hand your practice has very good exposure in this competitive, physician, hiring landscape.

Who can a medical group partner with to help cover recruitment costs?

The recruitment arrangement exception allows practices to seek assistance from a hospital under the Stark Laws prohibiting physician self-referral. This allows your medical group to seek assistance, when hiring physicians and offering competitive packages which may include medical school debt repayment assistance, guaranteed salary, paying recruitment firm fees, or continuing education allowances.

What are some ways to separate yourself from all the others competing for the tight physician pool?

New Physicians are not only looking for a job but also to see the total package that will help them succeed in their new practice

1. Offer guidance in new methods of patient acquisition such as social media (FaceBook, Twitter, Patient Blogs….)

2. Offer guidance in new methods to work with referring physicians using new media (LinkedIn, Physician facing Blogs, writing for online patient facing websites & peer review websites …)

3. Provide some assistance with the groups general marketing practices….One of the scariest things to new physicians is how to gain a patient base that will substantiate their pay

Keep in mind when hiring new physicians
It’s not always easy

Selecting the right physician candidate for your practice is never easy, and there’s always an element of the surprise. Taking this into consideration you can increase your odds for success by carefully evaluating each candidate in relationship to the needs of the practice and the specific position you have to offer.

One example: Work-life balance has been cited numerous times, by many publications, as one of the most important considerations among young physicians. According to multiple surveys the number of physicians who choose to work part-time and or flex time has increased dramatically in recent years. More doctors are likely to be women who, historically and statistically, will be more likely to seek part-time or flex-time working environments. These women are talented doctors and just because they are looking for flex time shouldn’t mean to ignore them. This actually presents a very interesting hiring tool when trying to effecentiely and economically staff your practice. The industry has an ever increasing gender shift and medical practices have to remember new physicians are planning families.

Tips for keeping your medical staff HAPPY!

Tips for keeping your medical employees HAPPY!

1. Clearly defined job descriptions and clearly defined chain of command

Many medical practices often delegate responsibilities in a very informal manner/process. This is a recipe for disaster in any large practice and or growing practice. Consider listing project priorities for your practice that are receiving attention because you’re working around staff that haven’t previously had defined job rolls and or responsibilities. SpineSearch recommends creating an organizational chart and chain of command diagram and a job description for every roll within your office.

2.Establishment of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)

A formal system includes employee goals, assessments of substantive accomplishments and behaviors, peer reviews, goals and prioritities, support needed from our staff. KPIs are important so employees know, before undertaking the job or project, exactly what is needed to be done and what an acceptable outcome is.

3. Reward those who go above and beyond
Reward those that work extra hours, are extremely resourceful, and or go outside of their job description to complete tasks for the office. Monetary rewards are not always the most successful. Try giving half days, dinner on the office, peer recognition…and don’t limit the rewards to individuals. Your office should also have team goals/descriptions — these groups can and should be rewarded.

4. Continuing education / opportunity for self improvement & advancement

In this era of health care reform it is extremely challenging to keep up with changing laws, regulations, reimbursement guidelines, daily operations and daily practice demands. By keeping employees current in each of their individual fields it helps to ensure the entire office is up to par with changes. This process also helps let employees know that you are investing in them and the betterment of their individual careers. Don’t just focus on clinical or required education. Look for education on customer service, disaster planning, patient flow, time management….

5. Have Fun!

FUN in the job place can go a lot longer than most administrators would think. Celebrate events such as birthdays, anniversaries, child birth, holidays and office specific accomplishments. If you are undergoing a big task, such as converting to an EMR system, order food for the office, give a small gift to each member of the team before the process begins (thanking them for their committing to the successful accomplishment of the task), or go out for an office dinner/drinks as a FUN event.