Using A ‘Brick’ System of Staffing and Duty Rotation for Optimal Utilization of Manpower and Reducing Attrition of Health Care Workers in An Isolation Ward During the Covid19 Pandemic
European Journal of Molecular & Clinical Medicine,
2020, Volume 7, Issue 3, Pages 620-631
AbstractIntroduction: The COVID19 pandemic has affected nearly 80 million people globally,tremendously increasing the burden on healthcare resources worldwide, especially in developing countries like India. The requirement of separate isolation wards for suspected and confirmed cases, continuous use of uncomfortable personal protective equipment (PPE), need for a 2 weekquarantine after a period of duty in the COVID19 wards and a high risk of infection lead to an increased requirement of health care workers (HCW) for hospitals in the scenario of such an infectious pandemic compared to routine working. We have devised a ‘brick’ system of staffing for nursing staff to more optimally utilize the precious resource of HCWs and reduce their attrition due to infection while continuing to provide them periods of rest and recuperation.
Materials and methods: We utilized a ‘brick’ system of 4 nursing staff per 50 patients working for 6 hours shifts followed by 12 hours of rest for 14 days. After 14 days of continuous duty, all nursing staff were given a rest for 2 weeks followed by 2 more weeks of duty and so forth. At the end of 08 weeks all nursing staff who had worked under the new system were subjected to a 10 question survey to see their satisfaction and acceptance of it.
Results: Though the majority of nursing staff preferred the older system of duty rotation, they were willing to accept the merit of using the new ‘brick’ system in the scenario of the pandemic and were willing to recommend it for use in COVID19 wards.
Conclusion: The ‘brick’ system of nurse staffing can allow optimal utilization of HCWs in the present pandemic especially in resource constrained countries like India. The system can be exhausting and tiring but is acceptable to most HCWs.
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