Self-rostering: how long is your roster?

November 02, 2017bestpractice

If you are a private hospital and considering your next self-roster process, or a public hospital and have on-call shifts that would be easier to do through self-roster, then we at HosPortal have some good insight on best practices. We will post some of these over the coming weeks.

For this post, we will focus on all issues regarding how long the roster should run for.

In Australia, many hospitals roster 12 months from February or March. This ensures that everyone has plenty of notice for the long Christmas holiday season and can plan for leave well in advance. We have recently re-aligned roster periods for some hospitals that had November and December cycles by running 14 and 16 month roster periods.

In most hospitals a 12-month roster period is fine. But some hospitals have a high turnover of doctors from the accreditation list, or there are regular changes in doctor activity that affect the target quota for each doctor. In which case, a shorter roster period might be more suitable. You could do 3- or 6-month rosters on a rolling cycle, with each roster finalised 3 months in advance. This means you could be rostering June, July and August in March, and September to November in June, and so on. This is trivially easy in HosPortal, and pretty easy for the doctors involved, too.

It is impossible to get everyone happy with what you choose. Feel free to get in touch and we would be happy to share our thoughts on your plans.

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