As the demand for nurses increases, it can become increasingly difficult to find nurses for nurse triage programs, which typically require extensive clinical experience, often in emergency room and/or critical care. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are close to 200,000 openings for registered nurses on average each year.
Importance in Workers’ Compensation
Using evidence-based clinical guidelines, triage nurses assess the needs of injured workers in order to provide care recommendations and disposition to the appropriate level of care. When treatment is required, the triage nurse provides physician/facility information based on location of the injured worker, client preference and network affiliation. This early engagement with the injured worker promotes utilization of preferred providers, reduces unnecessary doctor and emergency room visits, and lowers claim costs.
Best Practices for Nurse Triage Programs
- Continuous Education: Knowledge upkeep and exposure to a variety of call types, using practice scenarios for both new and tenured triage nurses.
- Continuous Quality Oversight: Regular QA of triage calls to ensure utilization of clinical protocols and disposition to appropriate level of care, as well as evaluation of the interaction between the triage nurse and injured worker.
- Key Communication Competencies: It is imperative that triage nurses practice active listening, remain objective and avoid any stereotypes while talking with an injured worker. This will ensure that the nurse obtains key information regarding the workplace injury and is able to provide care recommendations and disposition to the appropriate level of care.
Why Outsource With Shearwater?
- 24/7 solution: Shearwater can help provide coverage for shifts that may be difficult to staff such as nights and weekends. We enable our customers to expand the size and impact of their clinical teams.
- Training: Recognizing the breadth of knowledge required for triage, Shearwater nurses undergo an additional 4-6 weeks training, focusing on anatomy and body parts commonly involved with workplace injuries, as well as clinical assessment and telephonic skills.
- Extensive interview process: inclusive of a clinical assessment and evaluation to confirm clinical acumen prior to moving forward to final interview with operations