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Benefits of Consistent Assignment Featured in New Video

April 26, 2012

MPRO, Michigan’s Quality Improvement Organization, has produced a video on the benefits of the consistent assignment staffing model that more nursing homes are using to schedule their staff.

The video features interviews with staff and residents from three facilities in Michigan that are using consistent assignment, which helps to strengthen relationships between direct-care workers and consumers and leads to better care and less turnover.

“Without the opportunity to form close relationships and a system that protects the continuity of the relationships, person-centered care and sustainable culture transformation cannot occur,” said PHI Organizational Change Consultant Cean Eppelheimer.

“Being well-known within the community through the practice of consistent assignment is fundamental to quality person-centered eldercare and underlies the development of a more meaningful workplace,” Eppelheimer continued.

According to Advancing Excellence in America’s Nursing Homes, a national campaign aimed at improving the quality of nursing home care, consistent assignment (pdf) means that residents see the same caregivers (registered nurse, licensed practical nurse, or certified nursing assistant) almost every time they are on duty.

“Nursing homes that begin using consistent assignments might have to change the way they manage staffers,” said Mary Jane Koren, MD, chair of the Advancing Excellence in America’s Nursing Homes Campaign and vice president at the Commonwealth Fund.

“After the initial startup, they often find the new way is a better way: They often catch medical problems in the early, treatable stages,” Koren said. “In the end, nursing homes that adopt consistent assignment reduce staff turnover and work to improve other quality measures gain something priceless: They’ll have a facility that fosters strong relationships between caregivers and residents, and offers the highest standard of care.”

— by Deane Beebe

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