Physicians seeking new jobs are increasingly citing lifestyle issues as critical factors when making decisions about where to practice. Consistently ranked first among such issues is call duty.
To help maintain a realistic schedule among your physicians that keeps them happily employed in your practice, you may want to fine-tune how you structure your call duty – especially the holiday schedule.
Here are a few methods for creating an equitable holiday call schedule.
Pizza Party Method: This method is quite scientific and involves two critical factors: free food and a group physician meeting. As the name implies, many practices hold an annual pizza party often in June or July and create the holiday call rotation for the following year. If you use this method, be sure to bring a copy of your current holiday tally report as a starting reference point (good on-call scheduling software like TigerSchedule makes tally reports easily available). Everyone works together to cover all of the holidays via a volunteer sign-up process, and at the end of an hour, the year is finished. Everyone leaves happy and full.
Round Robin Method: This method is often a default when the physicians are not interested in volunteering for any holiday assignments. The Round Robin will allow a group to schedule holidays out for several years – the number of years depending on the number of providers. Here, you will list years across the top of a spreadsheet, all the holidays down the left side, and physician names will be in the middle. This method will also rely on past holiday tally reports (found in TigerSchedule) to enable you to continue with the current assignment cadence.
Diversity Method: Taking advantage of the diversity within your practice, the diversity method will primarily consider which holiday each provider observes, and which providers have young kids. If the Christian physicians cover the Jewish and Islamic holidays, then the Jewish and Muslim physicians cover the Christian holidays. The remainder of the holidays can be split evenly, or people can volunteer to work them.
|Holiday & Year||2021||2022||2023||2024|
|New Year’s Day||Dr. A||Dr. B||Dr. C||Dr. D|
|Labor Day||Dr. B||Dr. C||Dr. D||Dr. A|
|4th of July||Dr. C||Dr. D||Dr. A||Dr. B|
|Memorial Day||Dr. D||Dr. A||Dr. B||Dr. C|
|Thanksgiving||Dr. A||Dr. B||Dr. C||Dr. D|
|Christmas Day||Dr. B||Dr. C||Dr. D||Dr. A|
If you are one of the unlucky ones who find themselves A.) on call in a physician lounge waiting on labs, or B.) resting in an on-call room inside of a sterile hospital waiting on the next Trauma, here are a few tips you can use to help make the upcoming holidays bearable.
We at TigerConnect are very thankful for all of you who are on-call this holiday season. After all, any of us could end up in a car accident or begin having chest pains, and we’re comforted in knowing that there are medical professionals who have selflessly agreed to be on-call so that we may be treated and safely returned to our families. Thank you!
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