“If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” – this means that if something works well enough, there is no need to change or improve on it. While that may have been fine in the past, the attitude this idiom suggest is simply unacceptable in today’s world, where things can completely change in a single decade. As a matter of fact, medical practices are encouraged to make sure that their staff and services are up to date. For that to happen, medical practices need to invest in staff development so as to help their staff keep up with the latest discoveries in the world of medicine.

Less likely to violate the laws unknowingly

The medical practice risks being frozen in time if the staff do not stay updated in their respective fields. Staff who are behind times are more prone to committing mistakes and, in some cases, making assumptions without knowing the possible legal ramifications of those assumptions. They will run the medical practice based on the old rules, which might be harmful to the practice as the staff is at the risk of violating current regulations and unknowingly break the law. If that happens, the practice might end up in some trouble, affecting their reputation and even credibility in their community. Ensuring that their staff are up to date on the latest happenings in their line of specialities will help to reduce the likelihood of complaints and lawsuits due to ignorance.

Boost in staff attitude and performance

Investing in staff development will empower staff, and they will be more at ease while doing their jobs. Having confidence in their ability to handle their tasks at the medical practice well can boost their morale, leading to an increase in productivity. Thus, the medical practice will likely rake in more daily revenue and accumulate it well into the future. Furthermore, as staff become more competent and educated, the medical practice can consider promoting them to more challenging positions. If staff find that they have the opportunity to advance in their line of work in the medical practice, they are less likely to leave in search of new opportunities and challenges. This will help to reduce the turnover rate in the medical practice. Thus the investment in staff development will indeed be money well-spent.

Keeping a budget for staff development

Knowing the benefits of staff development, how the medical practice go about in investing in staff development? Medical practices could do so by sending their administrators and managers to attend their professional association meetings in their individual specialities. However, it would be even better for medical practices to keep a budget that allows them to invest in the development and training of their staff. For example, if the staff in charge of billing needs to be up to date with new coding and billing regulation, the medical practice could offer to subsidise some of the relevant training. If medical practices find it too expensive to constantly invest in their staff development, they could always scale it back and do it only once a year – having the budget itself is important to show that the medical practice is invested in helping staff to develop their abilities and potential.

Just as it is important for doctors to take courses, attend seminars and conferences about the latest happenings in the world of medicine, the staff in a medical practice, too, need to be up to date on what is happening in their line of profession. In today’s competitive market where talented and experienced staff are hard to find, it is vital for medical practices to find ways to keep their staff in the medical practice, and investing in staff development is one of such ways. MIMS

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