AHS Announces SHARP Staffing to Improve Overall Hospital Efficiency Through Labor-Cost Management

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American Healthcare Solutions understands the difficulties hospitals face when it comes to labor-cost management. In order to target and resolve this growing issue, AHS executives are proudly introducing their SHARP Staffing initiative to the marketplace. This multi-faceted, high-quality service integrates data from various industry resources to develop customized benchmarks that allow clients to better realize their operational aptitude.

Now that the New Year's ball has dropped and the confetti has settled, focus has been shifted in the business world to what 2007 has in store. While many industries are anticipating a positive market upswing, for some healthcare sectors the forecast may be bleak. With rising concern of expected shifts in reimbursement policy, hospitals are facing new labor-cost management challenges. While struggling to maintain a competitive cost position, the added pressures being placed on hospitals are forcing strain on their overall financial condition. In order to stay on track and forge ahead into the New Year with more ease, these organizations will require added support.

American Healthcare Solutions understands the difficulties hospitals face when it comes to labor-cost management. In order to target and resolve this growing issue, AHS executives are proudly introducing their SHARP Staffing initiative to the marketplace. This multi-faceted, high-quality service integrates data from various industry resources to develop customized benchmarks that allow clients to better realize their operational aptitude. The valuable enhancements identified and implemented through this program result in an achieved balance between labor costs and productivity. In short, SHARP Staffing provides the necessary tools to largely increase hospital-wide efficiency.

SHARP Staffing employs a simple five-step process that yields effective results.

Step 1: A skilled group of AHS consultants will begin by developing a regional peer group defined by client-specific indicators. Hospitals of similar size, structure, location, and specialty are compared using narrow parameters to extract historical, labor-related data to be analyzed. Trends are identified and hospital benchmarks are created from the information obtained.

Step 2: The AHS team continues to tap further resources for additional labor-based research. They conduct personal interviews with hospital management to gain a clearer understanding as to how each department is actively functioning and the costs associated with existing productivity levels. Touring the facility and observing daily hospital activity also allow the AHS consultants to effectively determine labor performance. AHS executes a thorough quality evaluation of all areas relevant to the project.

Step 3: A detailed report is then drafted by the AHS group to encompass a situational overview, supported findings, and structured recommendations for each hospital department evaluated by the SHARP Staffing program. The document is presented to the hospital Board and executive administration by the AHS project managers to gather helpful feedback and discuss future project direction.

Step 4: Once the breakdown of the hospital's current status is complete, the AHS team can either adapt or create productivity tools to meet labor needs and begin to improve the function of each targeted department. Incorporating these efforts with the hospital's budget allows for a more seamless integration of the new processes and procedures. Bi-weekly departmental reports issued by AHS show progress and cost savings as they occur so that corrections to the plan or future staffing needs can be projected.

Step 5: The work of the AHS consultants does not stop there. Project maintenance extends far beyond the commencement of the initial plan. Meetings with hospital management are continually conducted over the life of the program to discuss organizational improvement. Quarterly reports are issued to the Board of Directors to show trending efficiency and financial indicators as SHARP Staffing unfolds. Benchmarks are updated annually, thus moving each department towards best practice standards. As increased accountability becomes a staple of the hospital's organizational culture, significant cost savings are realized and the targets are achieved.

Client hospitals that turn to SHARP Staffing for labor-cost solutions are met with clear success. For every 50 beds, the typical hospital impacts their bottom line by $1,000,000 through the implementation of this program. Clients experience a reduction in agency and overtime hours, as well as the elimination of additional unnecessary personnel to their cost structure. In most cases, this equates to a modest productivity improvement, ranging from 2%-3%. By benchmarking each department's efficiency, hospitals ensure that they are utilizing the correct staffing mix according to their actual volume levels. In addition, they decrease excess labor hours, maximizing the utilization of their current employees. Based on the low overhead of the firm, AHS offers this product at a rate that guarantees clients a 10%-15% return on investment.

SHARP Staffing enjoys many competitive advantages over similar hospital efficiency programs. Clients under the care of a talented AHS team benefit from a two-month turnaround time for initial findings as compared to the average six-month rate that many other agencies produce. Peer group identification, unique benchmarking, clinical staffing grids, position control system development, bi-weekly reporting, and customized tools/training are just some of the many reasons that American Healthcare Solutions' SHARP Staffing is miles ahead of the rest. Unlike many services in the field, SHARP Staffing requires no software purchases nor hospital staff additions to fully deploy all of the features it offers. The AHS system is user-friendly with fast results, allowing hospitals to direct their attention away from the labor-cost management issues they face and onto higher quality patient care.

About American Healthcare Solutions

American Healthcare Solutions is a healthcare consulting firm singularly focused on the business of hospitals and healthcare organizations through three proprietary offerings in revenue cycle improvement, supply chain management and productivity benchmarking, American Healthcare Solutions improves financial performance and enhances competitive positioning. For more information, visit http://www.americanhs.com.

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Stephanie Dorwart
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