Morale in the medical industry is currently at an all time low. The malaise isn’t solely confined to the ranks of the junior doctors and nursing staff either. Once revered by society, physicians and consultants have become disillusioned with the demanding expectations of their jobs. As a workplace, hospitals are now asking for more from their staff than ever before and this pressure is causing doctors and nurses to show indifference towards a job they were once enthused by.
There’s no doubt medical staff expect some degree of pressure in their job. But in today’s industry doctors and nurses are incredibly limited by regulations and medical mandates. Third parties make a number of crucial decisions on behalf of senior staff and the majority of their patient care time is now allocated to data collection. With so much interference in their work, it’s no wonder we are seeing more and more doctors and nurses take up job opportunities in places like Dubai. But what exactly can be done to alleviate the current mood?
Improving The Quality Of Patient Care
Some doctors and nurses get into their profession simply to turn a profit. However, for the majority of healthcare professionals, their love for the job comes before everything else. So when there are limited opportunities to spend quality time with their patients, medical staff begin to lose interest in their day to day routine.
Metrics have become commonplace in the medical industry, dictating a lot of what doctors and nurses can and can’t do. This limits the human to human contact that inspired many professionals to enter the healthcare service in the first place. Whilst documentation may be necessary for hospital targets, it is not allowing medical staff to perform to the best of their abilities. In order to overcome these problems, the industry needs to be willing to put its patients ahead of its profit margins.
Offering Better Incentives For Working Longer Hours
The wages of healthcare workers are certainly not to be sniffed at. But when nurses and doctors are stretched to their very limits, their incentive to work is dramatically reduced. Reductions in staff have led to medical staff working longer and longer hours just to fulfill their quota. With so many patients to review and diagnose, the stress of the job can quickly become overwhelming. On top of this, healthcare workers are getting the same money for less sociable hours.
Incentives need to be introduced if staff are to be retained and recruited. Increased overtime rates should be obligatory in all hospitals, especially if they require staff to work for more consecutive days than are stated in their contracts. Overworked and under qualified staff aren’t beneficial to anyone and poor performance will undermine any budgetary cuts that are made.
Ensuring There Are Enough Qualified Professionals In The Pipeline
A major reason nursing staff don’t stay in their jobs long term is because they feel harassed or unfairly treated. In most cases, this is down to a gender bias. Eighty percent of medical staff in the US are women and yet there is still a gender divide when it comes to pay and promotions.
This kind of inequality has marred the healthcare industry for a number of years and is a key factor in the loss of experienced staff. More and more veteran nurses are leaving the profession entirely, resulting in the healthcare service having fewer nurses to mentor the next generation of employees. Whilst interest in career development is as high as ever, without experienced staff to foster this passion, the number of qualified nurses will begin to dwindle. Addressing the imbalance between male and female roles needs to be a priority if anything is to change.
Supporting Workers From Management Positions
It’s easy to expect a consistently high workrate from you staff. But, unless you show continued appreciation of their efforts, you are unlikely to see the productivity you are hoping for. Many medical staff feel they aren’t listened to by those in management positions and that their jobs are undervalued.
Recognising the work of your staff is integral to keeping them happy and motivated. Workplace culture should be prioritised above all else, because it is those on the frontline that ultimately determine the success of your service. Providing regular feedback and resources to help doctors and nurses carry out their jobs effectively is the backbone to all quality healthcare.
Providing Opportunities For Career Progression
Allowing your employees to stagnate is detrimental to any employment strategy. In healthcare it can result in disillusioned medical staff, who don’t feel they have any room to grow. Whilst many employees will be content to work in the same role for the duration of their career, they still need to feel as if they are progressing.
Some medical staff may only settle for promotions, but others will simply want to know that they can receive the training and mentorship they need to improve their skillset. Working with staff to set personal goals and openly communicating with them on opportunities for progression will help them feel part of a bigger picture. Once doctors and nurses know they are a valued asset to the workplace, they will strive to be the best version of themselves possible.
Author Bio: Ron Stewart has worked in the recruitment industry for 30 years, having owned companies in the IT, Construction and Medical sectors. He is currently running a medical jobsite, helping medical staff find careers in countries across the globe. You can connect with Ron on LinkedIn to see more of his portfolio.