In today’s challenging long-term care world, focusing on facility census is key in the continued health of the organization. Demand for services is projected to increase, but attracting residents to any facility rests on a reputation for providing the best in services and nursing care.
A two-pronged approach is the best way to ensure the continued success of any facility. The first is to attract the best employees possible so excellent care and services will be provided. The second is to design a system by which the census of a facility can be monitored and expertly managed.
Attracting people who reflect the culture and values of the organization is the function of excellent recruitment and judicious employee selection. As the reputation of the facility grows, so should the number of people interested in using its services.
Managing the census becomes of primary importance. This can be done through a carefully designed four step process.
- Step One: Create a daily census report that is shared with all facility leaders.
- Step Two: Institute weekly census calls that communicate census changes and risk areas. The calls should promote ideas and stimulate productive discussions.
- Step Three: Establish monthly census calls that include administrators and admission and marketing directors. Each participant is encouraged to contribute new ideas designed to increase improve reputation and increase census.
- Step Four: Survey residents and employees to determine strengths and weaknesses of the organization. Recruitment and marketing strategies could be adjusted to enhance facility/organization reputation.
So, promoting a positive reputation in the community for providing excellent care and services becomes the driver for maintaining a strong census. The excellent care and services come from attracting employees that want to be part of the organization.
Sort of sounds like…which comes first? The answer is they both have to come along together.