A common challenge for hospice providers is to offer 24/7 staff availability that is consistent for patients and their families while not taxing employees.
Cornerstone Hospice and Palliative Care's seven-day care model is being held up as an example to other organizations as a protocol that ensures clients are always interacting with team members they know and trust, while enriching the quality of care.
In the seven-day model, case managers are staffed Monday through Thursday and Friday through Sunday, instead of the standard five-day model with triage nurses tending to patients during off-peak hours. The enhanced model ensures continuity in the care team which improves communication amongst the staff and with the patient and their caregivers.
"We have the same team and it's very reassuring. They've endeared themselves to us," said Beverly Porter of Winter Garden. Her husband has been cared for by the Cornerstone Hospice Diamond Team. "He perks up when they come and smiles. I feel as though I'm in a safety net of care and caring."
"Since implementing the care model throughout Cornerstone Hospice's seven-county region, we've seen that patients establish stronger relationships with their teams which has led to greater productivity amongst the staff and fewer after hour phone calls to the triage center," said Jason D'Auria, Executive Director of Cornerstone Hospice in Polk, Hardee and Highlands counties, Fla. "It has contributed to a better work/life balance for our teams because they have more peace of mind on their days off knowing their patients are covered."
D'Auria notes that all patient-facing team members are Cornerstone Hospice employees and not from a contracted agency. -more-
D'Auria and Cornerstone Hospice COO Rhonda White, CHC, MPH, BSW will present the new structure at the upcoming National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization's 2017 Management and Leadership Conference, on May 1, in Washington, DC.