• Andrea Glispie

Methodist, Parkland and UT Southwestern work to keep and advance patient care technicians

Updated: Oct 23, 2018

Photo by wang dongxu on Unsplash

Earlier this year the National Fund for Workforce Solutions awarded Pathways to Work a grant in the amount of $100,000 to help local employers incorporate new skill development strategies and/or business practices that improve their competitiveness and result in better jobs for workers. The grant was made possible by The Prudential Foundation.

With this investment, Pathways is teaming up with the DFW Hospital Council Foundation to help Methodist Health, Parkland Hospital and Health System, and UT Southwestern Medical Center improve job retention, reduce turnover and vacancies, and support career advancement of Patient Care Technicians (PCTs) within the job and to higher skilled positions through these core strategies:

  • Peer Support, Mentoring, and Employee Feedback Loops to help PCTs feel more engaged with co-workers, supervisors, and the broader healthcare institution.

  • Career Maps and Strategic Communication Tools on Advancement Opportunities to help PCTs see that this position is an important first step in a long and rewarding healthcare career that may lead to a variety of positions not exclusively tied to nursing.

  • Public Recognition Programs to show the importance of PCTs on the patient care team and to empower front-line supervisors and patients to recognize excellent care of PCTs in ways that elevate the position in the continuum of patient care.

Now at the halfway point of the grant period, the healthcare employers are in the process of implementing transformative projects for their PCT workforce.

Methodist Health

Methodist has focused on making advancement opportunities more transparent and accessible to PCTs. The health system has developed career maps for high priority allied health positions, such as surgical technologist, radiology technologist and physical therapist aide. Methodist recently utilized these maps at an education fair hosted on its Charlton and Dallas campuses to help PCTs set career goals and identify the steps they need to take to reach their goals. Ten colleges and universities participated in these events.

Parkland Hospital and Health System

In June, Parkland rolled out the “ROSE” Award (Recognition of Service Excellence) to recognize exemplary PCTs. The ROSE award mirrors the Daisy Award for nursing and is given monthly to inpatient and outpatient unlicensed assistive personnel. Winners receive a certificate, a rose badge clip, pin, free reserved parking for the month, movie tickets, and cookies for their unit. Parkland also set up a Facebook page and a Wall of Excellence in the lobby of the hospital to publicly acknowledge ROSE award winners.

The first recipients of the ROSE Award shared:

“Thank You, I Feel Honored And Very Appreciative That SHOBHA BANDLAMUDI, RN Nominated Me And Took The Time To Share Such Kind Words On Me. I am Also Very Appreciative To The Family Medicine Clinic Faculty, Residents, And Staff. For Demonstrating Not Only A Willingness To Go Above And Beyond on their Job Duties, But To Do So With Enthusiasm And Positivity. I Found That It’s Important To Remind Myself That I’m Not Just Here Do A Job, But Serve Our Patients, Faculty, Residents, And Staff. When You Go About Your Job With A Mindfulness Toward Serving Others, Your Job Ceases To Be A Job And Becomes A Sense Of Purpose”. – Patricia Branch, Senior Medical Assistant

“I have been working here at Parkland for about 6yrs now, and I would have never thought I would have been recognized on such a level. To have been chosen for the Rose award and being one of the very first to receive this award has been an extreme honor. Although I was the one who won received the award, I would have never got here without my amazing team. I seriously work with the BEST team at Parkland. A huge thank you to my whole 9Ortho family for making this award extra special for myself by not only showering me with love, but also letting my family be a part of the ceremony, And of course an even bigger thank you to Ashley Miller, RN. for nominating me and believing that I was worthy of such an honor. I am so glad that we have this opportunity here at Parkland and I am so proud to be able to work at such a great hospital”- Alejandra Gonzales, Patient Care Assistant II

UT Southwestern Medical Center

UT Southwestern has enhanced its PCT onboarding by implementing a PCT residency program and PCT preceptor training. The intent of the PCT residency program, modeled after the nurse residency program, is to provide PCTs with a solid foundation to become proficient in providing safe patient care. The PCT preceptor training provides greater uniformity in terms of the expectations placed on preceptors. To support these efforts, UT Southwestern has hired a full-time coordinator to develop and oversee both the residency and preceptor programs.

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