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New competency process planned for clinical team members

Ballad Health is changing the process for how clinical team members do their competencies, moving away from TEDS and paper and transitioning to HealthStream. This will allow for streamlined completion and recordkeeping. Historically, Ballad Health has used several methods for completing clinical competencies, and leaders have been responsible for knowing the process for their area. This change will move all clinical team members to a single, more standardized approach for competency management. We will make the transition in stages, with the first group – all new nursing team members who work on a med/surg, PCU or ICU – making the change effective Sunday, July 3, for their initial competency validation. These competencies are now validated using a competency checklist assessment in HealthStream. More details will be announced as we prepare other groups of our clinical team members for the transition to the new HealthStream format. Competencies As a refresher, competencies are the ability to integrate…

Uncharted territory: A story of independence, innovation and teamwork within Ballad Health

This article was submitted by Ballad Health’s Spiritual Health Services department, describing a project the department spearheaded to enable chaplain Matt Hallam, who is blind, to carry out his full duties, including charting in the electronic medical record system and keeping a log of daily activities. Thanks to a team effort involving people from different departments across the system, a process was developed and a successful solution was created!   As a department leading Ballad Health in spiritual and cultural dimensions of health and well-being, we were faced with one of our greatest challenges. One of our team members/chaplains is blind. That chaplain was able to carry out most all of his duties independently, except for charting in the electronic medical records and maintaining an account of daily activities in a personal care log. This was a gap in our service at one of our facilities and we knew it needed to be addressed. Breaking…

Childcare focus groups set for July; we need your input!

Access to high-quality, affordable childcare is a barrier for many families in the Appalachian Highlands, including our team members. Childcare shortages are creating significant difficulties for families nationwide, and Ballad Health is committed to addressing these challenges both through existing childcare centers and by investing in new childcare sites across the region. This is where our team members come in: We want to hear from you for a more in-depth understanding of your needs for childcare. Ballad Health is pledging to address these barriers, and with your input, we can take the most efficient steps to ensure access to high-quality childcare across the Appalachian Highlands. We recently launched an online team member survey to get feedback about childcare and gathered some great input, but we want to provide opportunities for even more involvement. Please join us for this important childcare focus group and ensure your voice is heard. The sessions are conducted via Microsoft Teams,…

A message from Eric Deaton: Ballad Health is launching an internal nursing agency

NOTE: This message was emailed to all Ballad Health team members from Eric Deaton, chief operating officer for Ballad Health, on June 28, 2022. As always, it is important to say thank you to each of you for your relentless dedication to our mission, and to our patients. The unprecedented national labor shortage is affecting the entire health care industry, and we know it is being felt throughout Ballad Health. We continue to make extraordinary efforts to reduce the impact of the shortage, but we are not naïve.  We know you each see the impact of it daily. Over the past year, we have reached out to nurses and leaders throughout Ballad Health, in each of our hospitals, as we have sought new ideas based on your experiences. I’m pleased to share with you that among the many good ideas we have heard, and are implementing, is the creation of a new internal nursing agency to help…

Message from HR: Important reminders about our new benefit plan year

This Friday, July 1, marks the beginning of the new fiscal year and the effective date of the Ballad Health benefits you selected during open enrollment. The premium deduction for benefits will occur on the July 8, 2022, paycheck. Here’s a rundown of the key benefits being offered: MEDICAL – The Ballad Health Choice, Ballad Health Bronze and Ballad Health PPO (if applicable) plan deductibles and out-of-pocket accumulators start over on July 1. The medical plan provider directories are available online at bcbst.com/balladhealth. Click on the resources tab to review the provider listings. You can also review the provider directories on the Ballad Health intranet by clicking on Ballad Health Benefits and Network providers. Deductible, out-of-pocket and claim information can be viewed online by creating a member account on the BlueCross BlueShield website (bcbst.com). If you newly elected a Ballad Health medical plan and have not received your ID cards, or if you need additional cards, please…

Smart Square updates to a new look on Wednesday, June 29

Smart Square will update its scheduling software with a modern, mobile-friendly look on June 29 between 2 a.m. and 3 a.m. This is the program Ballad Health facilities use to schedule clinical and clinical support team members. This update will primarily affect the menus within Smart Square. It will not change any of the information on Smart Square or alter any of the schedules. However, it will provide a new, smoother navigation experience that will make it easier for both team members and schedule editors to locate the tools they need. You will no longer need to toggle to Classic Smart Square to view everything you need. All scheduling tools will now be organized on the left side of the page, and preferences, notification settings and tutorials are contained in one list in the top right corner of the page. If you view your work schedule on Smart Square, please review this tip sheet before…

Diversity & Inclusion: Ballad Health recognizes June as Pride Month

June is Pride Month, when we recognize the valuable contributions of LGBTQIA+ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer and/or Questioning, Intersex and Asexual) individuals across America and reaffirm our commitment to standing in solidarity with LGBTQIA+ Americans in their ongoing struggle against discrimination and injustice. Ballad Health, as part of its values, supports equality and treating everyone with respect. This applies to patients and visitors to our facilities but also to fellow team members. As healthcare workers, we’re all in this together and no one should be ostracized, harassed or treated unfairly due to their sexual orientation or gender preference. Pride Month The original organizers chose this month to pay homage to the Stonewall uprising in June 1969 in New York City, which helped spark the modern gay rights movement. A police raid at the Stonewall Inn, an LGBTQ bar, led to riots and protests against harassment and unfair treatment of the gay community. A year…

Update from Alan Levine on upcoming bonus, recent Supreme Court ruling

NOTE: This message was emailed on Sunday, June 26, 2022, from Alan Levine, Chairman and CEO of Ballad Health, to all team members Dear Colleague: As always, I want to share with you our most sincere gratitude for the incredible work each of you do. I know the pressure of the labor shortages continues to take its toll. While progress is slow, I can tell you that there has been some progress in terms of hiring and reducing turnover systemwide. We will continue to lean in with our initiatives to hire more nurses and nursing support, and will continue to listen to you as good ideas are shared for how we can continue to reduce turnover. As you may recall, Ballad Health last March announced a two-part bonus we wanted to provide to all team members, with the first part being paid out in March, and the second part being paid out in July. In…

Ballad Health selects John Goetz as VP of community and government relations

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. – Ballad Health has named John Goetz, an experienced healthcare policy leader, to serve as its vice president of community and government relations. Goetz brings more than 15 years of experience in healthcare policy to his new role, and he replaces Andy Hall, who retired last year. He will represent Ballad Health before elected officials at the federal, state and local levels to advocate for patients’ and communities’ health and well-being in the Appalachian Highlands. “The experience and relationships John brings to the table will strengthen Ballad Health’s presence in the community,” said Anthony Keck, Ballad Health’s executive vice president for system innovation and chief population health officer. “He is well respected by legislators and staff on both sides of the aisle and has developed strong relationships at all levels of government. He is actively involved in community organizations and is a passionate advocate for the region.” A Chattanooga native, Goetz is…

Ballad Health holding two hiring events for all open positions

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. — Ballad Health is hosting two convenient recruitment events that will enable job seekers to apply and interview on-site for all open positions across the health system. Two different days and locations will be dedicated to recruitment efforts: Friday, June 24, 11 a.m.-4 p.m.Bristol Regional Medical Center, Magnolia Room Tuesday, June 28, 11 a.m.-4 p.m.Holston Valley Medical Center, Heritage Room Key jobs being sought at the event include RNs, LPNs, CNAs; medical lab technicians and medical technologists; several diagnostic imaging roles, including radiologic technologists, ultrasound technicians, CT technologists, MRI technologists and nuclear medicine technologists. “Our team members are our most crucial resource, and we’re committed to growing and cultivating that resource – namely, recruiting and expanding our employee base,” said Hamlin Wilson, Ballad Health’s vice president of employee relations. “The last two years have brought a new meaning to the work of clinical staff, and adding more compassionate healthcare professionals will strengthen…

REMINDER: The Ballad Health childcare survey deadline is today (June 24). We want your input!

Ballad Health is taking childcare suggestions from our team members through Friday, June 24, and we want to hear what you want from their childcare provider! We will be using input from our childcare survey as we move forward to address the lack of high-quality, affordable childcare that is a barrier for many families in the Appalachian Highlands, including our team members. Childcare shortages are creating significant challenges for families nationwide, and Ballad Health is committed to addressing these challenges both through existing childcare sites and by investing in new childcare sites across the region. We want to hear from you so we can better understand what our team members need, want and look for when selecting childcare. Ballad Health is pledging to address these barriers, and with your input, we can take the most efficient steps to ensure access to high-quality childcare across the Appalachian Highlands. To provide this very important input, we invite…

Sign up today to win a lavender prize basket

In May 2022, with support from the Ballad Health Foundation, we opened and celebrated our first Lavender Rooms at Bristol Regional Medical Center, Holston Valley Medical Center and Johnson City Medical Center. To celebrate team members who work at facilities that do not have a Lavender Room, we will be giving away 10 gift baskets so they can also take some time to relax. The Lavender-themed prize basket is for team members not located in facilities that have Lavender Rooms. The Lavender baskets are valued at $100 each and contain candles, soaps, chocolates, teas, blankets and more. If you work at facility without a Lavender Room, CLICK HERE to fill out this form for your chance to win a prize basket. The form will be open for one week, with the deadline being, Thursday, June 30, at noon. Please note: Only one entry per team member and tax implications will apply if you win. We…