Doctors and nurses have a lot on their plates every day. They see many patients with different situations and always need to be on their A-game. On top of attending to the needs of patients in the hospitals, nurses often have to spend valuable time calling patients recently discharged to check on their well-being. This is highly important and necessary, yet it takes away valuable time that can be allocated for other equally important tasks.
With such a demanding schedule, it is essential for caregivers to effectively manage their time. Doctors and nurses who know how to effectively allocate their time yield higher patient satisfaction scores than those who do not. It is important to find a good balance where the caregiver can consistently put their best foot forward without feeling fatigued and stressed.
Brightbloom Training suggests these 5 principles to effective time management:
Get it out of your head—trying to juggle everything you need to do in your head will overwhelm your brain’s ability to process information, make decisions, and be creative. Whatever the source, capture the things you need to do, both personal and professional, in a system you trust.
Prioritize prioritizing—do you regularly dedicate time to prioritizing for the day, week, or month ahead before you accumulate more actions? Time is one of your most precious resources. You must choose what you will and won’t do or risk being driven by the actions that are shouting the loudest at the time.
Automate or delegate—what simple tasks can you create an autopilot for? For example, pay bills automatically or set rules in your inbox to help your emails sort themselves. These actions then become something you only must monitor vs. actively managing.
Identify manageable actions—when you are feeling overwhelmed or something seems too challenging, identify the smallest possible next action that you feel you can do and do it. Then the next and so on. This helps create momentum.
Email is not your to-do list—if the email contains an action then put the action in your system and don’t rely on revisiting it in your inbox.
These principles are just a groundwork for effective time management. Certain mechanisms will work better for some more than others but is important to set boundaries. Time management does not increase the hours one works or soften one’s workload but can significantly reduce stress and make one feel more in control. Allocating certain tasks like patient callbacks will free up valuable time that can be allocated to currently admitted patients.
PREMEDEX helps nurses and doctors with time management by collaborating in their patient call-back program. Learn how we can help you make better use of your time to manage all patient needs. Click here to contact us today.