Addressing the clinician shortage for the long term requires continuous, dynamic reinvention to reimagine work and the workforce, enable technology and transform how care is delivered. Accenture has identified four imperatives that health leaders need to prioritize to reinvent care delivery:
Transform work experiences from the top
Change starts by reinventing care so that healthcare workers have greater wellbeing and better work experiences that leave them happier, healthier and more productive. Accenture’s “Net Better Off” framework quantifies human wellbeing across six dimensions. If leaders don’t pay attention to these dimensions, they risk losing healthcare workers with important skills to other sectors. Many healthcare executives need to develop a resilient, sustainable agile management culture that expects and embraces change.
Rethink teams and work models to increase capacity
Transforming teams to successfully operate in different environments or configurations can increase capacity. It will also drive efficiency and improve job satisfaction, which is part of leaving workers Net Better Off. Reconfiguring task distribution can allow clinicians to work at the top of their license while other work is given to other colleagues, machines or even home caregivers. Technology enables care models and empowers patients and teams to operate in different configurations and environments.
Blend technology and human ingenuity
Moving to a model that taps into the combined power of technology and human ingenuity can alleviate the pressure on people and, in many cases, allow them to better serve patients. But health systems will still need more clinicians to do the work only they are trained to do. Recruitment processes should be reinvented as well to reduce sourcing costs and streamline onboarding to get qualified people in the door faster and more affordably. Analytics can even help to predict supply and demand so that health systems can put resources where they are needed most.
Use technology to reinvent care
The digital technologies that are brought to bear in the metaverse, such as artificial intelligence, machine learning and augmented reality, allow clinicians to transcend time and space to simulate interactions or practice procedures, such as surgical training. These technologies can also enable life-like virtual therapeutics that empower patients to perform self-care. Accenture’s Digital Health Technology Vision 2022 report found that 81% of healthcare executives expect the metaverse to have a positive impact on the healthcare industry. Not only does automating or shifting tasks to technology save time for clinicians, but it also saves money for health systems.