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Am J Health Syst Pharm. 2008 Nov 15;65(22):2144-9. doi: 10.2146/ajhp080177.

Nontraditional work schedules for pharmacists.

Author information

1
William S. Middleton Memorial Veterans Affairs Hospital, Madison, WI, USA.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

Nontraditional work schedules for pharmacists at three institutions are described.

SUMMARY:

The demand for pharmacists and health care in general continues to increase, yet significant material changes are occurring in the pharmacy work force. These changing demographics, coupled with historical vacancy rates and turnover trends for pharmacy staff, require an increased emphasis on workplace changes that can improve staff recruitment and retention. At William S. Middleton Memorial Veterans Affairs Hospital in Madison, Wisconsin, creative pharmacist work schedules and roles are now mainstays to the recruitment and retention of staff. The major challenge that such scheduling presents is the 8 hours needed to prepare a six-week schedule. Baylor Medical Center at Grapevine in Dallas, Texas, has a total of 45 pharmacy employees, and slightly less than half of the 24.5 full-time-equivalent staff work full-time, with most preferring to work one, two, or three days per week. As long as the coverage needs of the facility are met, Envision Telepharmacy in Alpine, Texas, allows almost any scheduling arrangement preferred by individual pharmacists or the pharmacist group covering the facility. Staffing involves a great variety of shift lengths and intervals, with shifts ranging from 2 to 10 hours. Pharmacy leaders must be increasingly aware of opportunities to provide staff with unique scheduling and operational enhancements that can provide for a better work-life balance.

CONCLUSION:

Compressed workweeks, job-sharing, and team scheduling were the most common types of alternative work schedules implemented at three different institutions.

PMID:
18997144
DOI:
10.2146/ajhp080177
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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