As we enter year three of the COVID pandemic without the ability to predict what’s ahead, hospital staff of every kind have been stretched to the limit. In the U.S. alone, the healthcare sector lost nearly half a million workers between February 2020 and December 2021.1 Of the remaining workers, 31% have considered leaving their jobs.2
There are many contributing factors at play. However, hospitals and clinics have relieved some of the overwhelming-but-necessary administrative duties from their staff. For example, employee health (EH) software has helped streamline tasks related to safety and exposure reporting, immunization tracking, and accessing self-care resources.
Navigating Changing Immunization Regulations
COVID immunization guidelines can change without warning as cases work their way through courts and new variants evolve. Meanwhile, EH departments have to perform daily checks for compliance among hospital staff, check that all immunizations are up-to-date, provide information on how to access vaccines and boosters, and process oversight reports for administration and government entities alike.
Outside of EH departments, staff needs to keep abreast of these regulations as well, making time to ensure they’re adequately vaccinated and reporting their own compliance. Of course, this is in addition to their actual jobs.
These tasks can be done with paper, spreadsheets, and phone calls. But EH software can automate tracking and reporting. Ideally, this would also include an employee portal with an intuitive interface that makes self-reporting as simple as snapping a photo of a vaccine card.
The Duty to Protect Privacy
With the flurry of information changing hands between hospital staff and EH departments, having every employee maintain their right to privacy is crucial. This is especially true for keeping employee health records (EHR) secure and separate from occupational health data.
EH software systems do this work automatically. Not only are personal health records kept separate from public health reporting databases, but the data used in compliance reporting is anonymized automatically. That means staying HIPAA-compliant doesn’t require extra work on the part of EH departments.
Making Communication More Convenient
Hospitals can eliminate the need for EH departments to physically track down employees who need to complete compliance tasks such as flu or COVID booster shots with the right tools.
Employee Health software can automate these time-consuming (and often stressful) tasks by regularly sending out reminders to employees. These communications can also be customized each step of the way to include everything from new information about compliance responsibilities to changing clinic locations or new language about the urgency of completing tasks.
Technology for Wellbeing
Technology can simplify and automate some of the responsibilities of overworked staff. EH software, more specifically, can be configured to provide access to self-care resources and even telehealth support. This is especially useful as over 60% of health care workers reports that COVID-19 has negatively impacted their mental health.3
The COVID crisis has made self-care among hospital workers more difficult and more critical than ever. While software can’t care for people, it can help free up their most precious commodity: time. That’s time they can use for whatever helps relieve stress.
Learn more about how Employee Health software solutions can help your teams by accessing our ebook 6 Ways to Keep Your Employee Health Staff Healthy Amid COVID-19.
6 Ways to Keep Your Employee Health Staff Healthy Amid COVID-19
1 U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, “The Employment Situation – December 2021,” January 7, 2022.
2 Morning Consult, “Nearly 1 in 5 Health Care Workers Have Quit Their Jobs During the Pandemic,” October 4, 2021.
3 Kaiser Family Foundation and The Washington Post, “KFF/The Washington Post Frontline Health Care Workers Survey,” April 6, 2021.