Glossary of Healthcare Operations Terms

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Per Diem Staff

What is Per Diem Staff?

Per diem staff are temporary employees who work on an as-needed basis, without a fixed schedule, to fill in staffing gaps or handle increased patient loads. They provide flexibility and cost efficiency, allowing healthcare facilities to maintain adequate staffing levels while managing labor costs.

In what context is Per Diem Staff applicable?

Hiring temporary nursing staff on a per diem basis to address short-term fluctuations in patient census or staffing shortages.

Utilizing per diem physicians to cover shifts in emergency departments or urgent care centers during peak hours or unexpected absences.

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Frequently asked questions

How are per diem healthcare staff different from full-time or part-time employees?
Unlike full-time or part-time employees, per diem healthcare staff work on a temporary, on-call basis and are not typically guaranteed a set number of hours or a regular schedule. They provide flexibility for healthcare facilities to address fluctuations in patient volume, staffing shortages, or special projects without the long-term commitment of hiring permanent staff.
What are the benefits of hiring per diem healthcare staff?
Hiring per diem healthcare staff offers flexibility for healthcare facilities to meet fluctuating staffing needs, maintain adequate staffing levels during peak periods or emergencies, and minimize overtime costs. Additionally, per diem staff bring diverse skills and experiences, contributing to workforce versatility and adaptability.
How are per diem healthcare staff compensated?
Per diem healthcare staff are typically compensated on an hourly basis and may receive higher pay rates compared to full-time or part-time employees to account for the lack of benefits such as health insurance, retirement plans, and paid time off. Compensation rates may vary depending on factors such as experience, specialty, and demand.
How can healthcare facilities effectively manage per diem healthcare staff?
Healthcare facilities can effectively manage per diem healthcare staff by maintaining clear communication channels, providing adequate orientation and training, integrating them into existing teams, and utilizing workforce management software to streamline scheduling and payroll processes.
What qualifications are required for per diem healthcare staff?
Qualifications for per diem healthcare staff vary depending on the role and specialty but typically include appropriate licensure or certification, relevant education and training, and clinical experience. Healthcare facilities may also require additional credentials such as CPR certification or specialized training for certain roles.