Many times a complex on-call schedule from a large multi-specialty group or hospital is made up of several specialties combined into one large on-call schedule (master call schedule). This is a great view for those who need to reference all of the information all at once while creating their own schedules, or for the Emergency Department who may need to see everyone everywhere.
However, there are many instances where the master call schedule has limited viewing usefulness precisely because it IS so large.
How to split it up? Specialty, or even sub-specialty views are the answer. Such views are quick, clean, specific and more easily printed for reference as needed by the end user. The smaller calendar can be per specialty, each with its own view (example one each: Radiology, Anesthesia, Surgery, and Cardio). Or a single view can be created showing selected combined sub-specialties (example: Surgery, Podiatry, Wound and Hyperbolic)
But that’s a lot of work, especially with paper or excel!
Who is going to do all of that splitting, proofing and sending… the Medical Staff Office? And if you have a Master Schedule that you split up and send around, there is the additional problem of the schedules being edited at the local level without the new information reliably being fed back to the master schedule.
How to eliminate issues of having multiple-copy and/or multiple-versions of the physician on-call schedule? If a central “hosted” location is used, both the Schedulers and Viewers can benefit from having all of the various schedules located in a central place for all authorized persons to access, without sending anything around.
How about Google Docs? The on-call schedules would be centrally located, but you have not fixed the need for simpler or combined views of the schedules. AND you may end up with “14 schedulers” needing access to the Master Schedule to maintain each of the “14 specialties” it contains; or else one scheduler who is overwhelmed by doing everything.
Physician On Call Schedulers want control and accountability. They want to be able to edit and administer their own specific specialty without interfering with the other schedules, and at the same time feel secure that no one will be able to access their own calendar and change it.
Physicians and non-scheduled users want simple, clear views. The Emergency Department or Telecom really only wants to know who is scheduled for on-call TODAY, without all of the visual “noise” of the rest of month. Sometimes ED only wants to see information for a specific department today, and the rest of the schedules only if they need it.
Software specific for Physician On-Call scheduling is the answer. On line scheduling software is the best solution because it is not installed on any single computer. It is always available, always backed up, and you can create all of the various merged-views or sub-views, month views or daily views you need to create for various Providers and non-scheduled users such as clinical or hospital staff. If viewers insist on printing local copies, they can, but they can also subscribe to the schedule and have it automatically sync to Outlook, Google, or their Smartphone! In addition, the Schedulers benefit from automatic tallies, rule-based scheduling, various calendar layouts and subscriptions, and on-line Provider Requests.
Key Takeaway: Simplified views of complex On Call schedules benefit everyone. Use software specific for creating Physician On-Call schedules and make this create-once and publish-everywhere an easy, automatic process!