A female pharmacist sits with a senior female patient in the pharmacist consultation area and discusses her prescription and choice of medication. In the background a father and daughter stand at the dispensing counter and are served by a female pharmacy assistant .

Seeking a Healthcare Career? 7 Steps to Creating a Professional Demeanor That Keeps You on the Job

In the healthcare industry, maintaining a professional demeanor is critical. Not only do you want to be sure that you’ll be recognized for the time and effort you’ve put into your studies, you want to be sure that patients have a sense of confidence in you. You’re responsible for dealing with sensitive and private information, providing advice and treatment, and reassuring patients. With a calm, professional demeanor, you’ll be better able to control your patient interactions and put yourself in a better position to increase patient confidence. 

A female pharmacist sits with a senior female patient in the pharmacist consultation area and discusses her prescription and choice of medication. In the background a father and daughter stand at the dispensing counter and are served by a female pharmacy assistant .

Step One: Be Positive

No, you don’t need to go skipping down the halls, singing about all the wonderful opportunities that are open to you. Rather, you should maintain a positive attitude whenever you interact with your patients or coworkers. An attitude of doom and gloom or constant complaints–especially complaints relating to your job or coworkers–can quickly destroy patient confidence and convince them that they can’t trust you to adequately handle their case, which can, over time, erode your odds of promotion or even destroy your career. Instead, try to be upbeat. Remember why you chose to do what you do and why you enjoy it. When a coworker, from a nurse to a doctor, asks you to accomplish a task, do it cheerfully and calmly. This simple step inspires a great deal more confidence in your patients than seeing you come in complaining before you’ve even had a chance to get to know them. A dose of positive can go a long way toward improving your professional appearance. 

Step Two: Avoid Drama

“You know, we were just back in the nurse’s station talking about Deborah’s husband and…” “I don’t want to cause trouble, but you’ve dealt with Dr. Brown, and I haven’t been impressed with his diagnoses in the past.” Whether you’re talking directly to a patient or chatting at the nurse’s station, one of the fastest ways to decrease patient confidence and drop that professional demeanor is to get involved in drama. Your personal life doesn’t belong at work, especially when you’re dealing with patients. Instead, keep it professional while you’re on the clock! Avoid conflict with coworkers, and try not to get sucked into drama–even if a patient is the one to initiate the complaint. 

Step Three: Get Organized

There’s something reassuring about a medical professional who walks into a room and already knows exactly where everything is. Whether it’s a routine exam or an emergency, they don’t have to scramble for the proper materials; rather, they’re able to easily access exactly what they need. In many medical settings, it can be hard to keep up with simple organization tasks, but it’s a step that’s well worth it! Create a system that works for you, whether you’re pushing medical carts down the halls of a hospital or organizing an exam room in an office. Organize your personal supplies so that you know exactly where everything is. This can create a big difference in the way you appear to both patients and colleagues. 

Step Four: Listen

One of the most effective ways to create an aura of professionalism is to simply listen to those around you–both other workers and patients. As a doctor, for example, if a nurse tells you something, there’s a good chance that it’s important, whether they’ve observed odd patient behavior or noted a symptom you need to pay attention to. It also pays to listen to patients. Sometimes, they’re babbling just to talk or to calm their nerves, but other times, they may have something to say that genuinely relates to their care. Simply listening to them and giving genuine, considered responses can help increase their confidence in you and put you in a better position to provide high-quality care. 

Step Five: Be Honest

A little girl is at the doctors office for a check up. A nurse is sitting with them and talking to the mother.

It’s often tempting to blur the truth a little in a work environment, especially when you’re dealing with difficult patients. “Of course I remembered to tell the patient X.” “It wasn’t my turn to complete X task.” If you want to create a more professional attitude, however, be honest–both with your colleagues and with your patients. Own up to your mistakes and do what’s necessary to make it right. If things are way behind in the office, don’t tell patients that they’ll be seen in just a few minutes–give them an accurate assessment of what your schedule looks like, then offer them the ability to choose for themselves how they want to handle it. Honesty truly is the best policy–and it creates a more professional demeanor and appearance for your entire office. 

Step Six: Check the Small Stuff

As a medical professional, you know that there’s really no “small stuff” when it comes to dealing with patients. Inevitably, it’s the test you forgot to run or the gauge you forgot to check that turns out to be the most important to your patient. If you want to maintain a more professional demeanor, take the time to check the small stuff. Not only does this increase your quality of patient care, it shows your patients that you genuinely care about them and are willing to work hard to get to the bottom of whatever problem they’re having. 

Step Seven: Check Your Appearance

As nice as it would be if appearances didn’t matter, your appearance can go a long way toward establishing your professionalism in the eyes of your patients and your colleagues. Do a quick appearance check each day to make sure that you look as professional as possible. Check your scrubs to be sure that they’re clean and unstained. If they’re starting to look too worn, it may be time for a replacement. Keep your hair up and away from your face. For women, makeup should be professional and clean, rather than obvious or overdone. Take a quick look in the mirror: do you look like a medical professional that you’d want to treat you? If not, clean up your appearance for the benefit of everyone around you.

Taking the leap to become more professional can go a long way toward advancing your medical career and improving the confidence that patients have in you. With these seven steps, you can transform your demeanor so that patients will be able to more easily see just how capable you are. Want more information? Check out our course entitled, “How to Learn Professionalism in Healthcare (with Real-World Examples!),” offered by Avidity Medical Design Academy, which offers strategies to increase your professionalism and give you a winning attitude for success. Click here to learn more about this course.

Keys to Effective Training in the Healthcare e-Learning Environment

Managing healthcare e-Learning doesn’t have to be difficult, but there are three requirements that you just can’t afford to skip.

  • First: Ensure the system you use is accurate. Misinformation about medicine in the outside world is a significant problem. Unfortunately that is sometimes a problem within the field of medicine and health information management. For this reason, it is important to make sure that whatever system you use is screened for accuracy before using it as a training medium. This ensures that the information given to patients is substantive, and that the education provided is technically accurate and beneficial to patients as well as other healthcare practitioners.
  • Second: Ensure that the e-Learning platform is easy to use. Even if you are proficient in computer navigation, it’s likely that you’ve found a piece of software or website that was simply a pain to navigate. When you are considering one or more healthcare e-Learning solutions, make sure that the learning management system (LMS) is easy to navigate and that the platform is user friendly. This reduces the amount of time spent training employees, and helps them learn how to navigate the LMS with a minimum amount of difficulty. Make sure when considering a healthcare e-Learning solution that the system is easy to navigate, explains itself well so that you aren’t wasting large amounts of time training your employees on how to use the system, and that someone who has little to no computer expertise can navigate the system easily.
  • Third: Ensure that your training program is constantly evolving. This is necessary to keep pace with constant changes in the healthcare industry, and to support the theory that knowledge evolves over time. The information that we use to train healthcare professionals needs to evolve in relation to the knowledge that we gain about new healthcare methods, practices, policies, and procedures. For this reason, it is important to keep training programs up to date as new medical discoveries are made. This also ensures that patients are getting the best possible care, and healthcare employees are given the most accurate medical data to work with, in order to optimize their performance as healthcare practitioners.

To talk more about this, or anything else, please Contact Us. Thanks.

Getting Continuing Education Credit with Healthcare e-Learning

healthcare e-learningDoctors, EMTs, nurses, and other healthcare practitioners are constantly evolving from a professional standpoint, as medical procedures become more advanced. The value of continuing education cannot be denied; however, the busy professional lifestyle of individuals in the medical field sometimes makes continuing education classes difficult. To meet the demands of busy healthcare professionals, healthcare e-Learning has risen to the challenge. Healthcare e-Learning has become the most efficient way to provide continuing education to medical staff because online professional development training allows professionals to train in their spare time from the comfort of their own homes, rather than commuting back and forth to campus to adhere to an inflexible class schedule.

Avidity Medical Design designs courses for busy healthcare professionals. Courses include:

  • Medical Coding: Courses in medical coding include ICD-10 coding, CPT coding, and other health information management courses that directly pertain to medical coding.
  • Medical Transcription: Courses in medical transcription include practicum courses that help transcriptionists sharpen their skills in medical language interpretation and voice recognition editing.
  • Medical Claims Processing: Courses in medical claims processing train medical claims examiners to accurately apply Medicare and Medicaid guidelines, as well as guidelines for third-party administrators, to challenging claims processing situations.

Avidity Medical Design offers courses for busy medical professionals in the comfort of their homes and on their own timetable. Instructional and motivational design strategies solidify course content and keep doctors, nurses, EMTs, and other healthcare workers on the intellectual forefront of their fields.  Contact us to see how our unique e-Learning courses can help keep your healthcare professionals on track with continuing education and professional development.

How To Use Twitter To Train Healthcare Students In 3 Steps

What can be said in 140 characters? To be honest a lot can be said between the first and last word that can change the world. It can start a revolution or raise awareness for a cause. The power of Twitter to shape the world is undeniable.

It brings people from all over the world into the global town square to air their thoughts, hopes and dreams for the world to latch on to. Twitter is a powerful tool that can also be used to change the worldTwitter healthcare and educate healthcare students at the same time. Some might say; how can Twitter possible be used to educate healthcare students? The answer is based on 3 simple concepts:

Study In Real Time

Utilizing Twitter to train healthcare students is easy once you set up your Twitter account.  Twitter allows you to communicate instantaneously with anyone on the platform.

This allows you to have real time conversations with your cohort about study material, class assignments and other relevant information. Organizing a study session is as simple as asking your friends to follow you and starting a conversation.

The average person reads about 300 words per minute, so a study session should be easy for everyone to keep up with.

The Hashtag

The # sign or hashtag is by far the most important symbol in the Twitterverse. It serves a dual purpose. It allows you to organize your tweets and helps you find them when you need them.

For example say a student wants to start a subject on ICD-10, all they would have to do is enter #ICD-10 and the tweets covering this subject with this hashtag handle can be found with a search.

The hashtag makes finding and organizing your conversations efficient and easy to manage. Hashtags allow you to create communities of people interested in the same topic by making it easier for them to find and share info related to it.

Finding Information You Need

Along with bringing together people from all walks of life, Twitter is also an effective tool for disseminating information. Millions of Twitter users use their accounts to promote a certain agenda, spread ideas and information.

Twitter allows you to link and share web pages that you think are important. While researching information for an assignment you may find something interesting on the web.

The odds are that this website will have a Twitter share button for you to click. This allows your followers and classmates to see the website you shared making researching information a breeze.

When these three concepts are blended together you get a platform that allows you to organize in groups, find topics and research information effortlessly. Twitter can serve as a valuable tool in educating the next generation of healthcare professionals on a platform that they are accustomed to using. If you have any questions about this topic please contact us today.

Three Ways to Use Facebook to Train Healthcare Students

Facebook has become not only a way to find old friends or learn about the weekend’s events, it is also an incredible learning tool, for students of healthcare and countless other topics.  Teachers can utilize Facebook for class projects, for enhancing communication, and for engaging students in a manner that might not be entirely possible in traditional classroom settings.  Be creating a page specifically for the class, managing the privacy settings to exclude outside visitors, and connecting the class blog or online learning homepage to Facebook, healthcare students have a relaxed, inviting atmosphere of learning that encourages How to use facebook to train healthcare studentsparticipation and engagement.

Facebook encourages participation in class projects and class discussions where classroom learning often fails.  Healthcare students could be instructed to follow current news feeds.  There are dozens of pages related to the medical field, updated daily and broken down into sections for relevancy, keeping current information flowing through the class.  With the wealth of information available to healthcare scholars, students can review assigned topics, then post their abstracts on Facebook for other students to read, discuss, and peer-review.  An excellent way to ensure that healthcare students are more engaged in the learning experience—whether in a traditional classroom or at accredited online colleges—is by strengthening the communication between students and student-to-teacher.

Educators can create groups, schedule events, send messages, share multimedia, post class notes, make announcements, and post homework on Facebook, providing direct communication with instructors, facilitating classmate connections, and allowing shy students a way to communicate.  Healthcare students can even practice doctor-patient communication and bedside manner through Facebook messaging and comments.

Facebook for education offers students the opportunity for active communication on a level playing field.  Since students are likely familiar with Facebook already, implementing it into healthcare education and training provides comfortable, easy student access.  Facebook promotes collaboration, teaches personal responsibility, and keeps schools current in many medical and professional fields.

Please contact us to learn more tips on How To Use Facebook to Train Healthcare Students.

Bloom’s Taxonomy Brings Your Healthcare Training to Life

Course design is all about pedagogy, understanding how we learn best. But it’s not enough just to learn something to know it, students also need to be able to apply it. Unfortunately, so much of medical education relies on rote learning and memorization. Students may not remember how many hours they spent pouring over flashcards before a pre-med anatomy and physiology exam. Likewise, students may not remember everything they were tested on. That’s because the learning they are expected to do doesn’t involve applying that knowledge in a real world healthcare setting (the cadaver lab doesn’t count).

At Avidity Medical Design, we employ Bloom’s Taxonomy in training healthcare learners to bring your education to life. Bloom’s Taxonomy is the pedagogy sine qua non for Bloom's Taxonomy Training Healthcare Learnersholistic, integrative learning. For a simplified understanding of this concept, consider this excerpt from Wikipedia:

Bloom’s taxonomy refers to a classification of the different objectives that educators set for students (learning objectives). It divides educational objectives into three “domains”: cognitiveaffective, and psychomotor (sometimes loosely described as “knowing/head”, “feeling/heart” and “doing/hands” respectively). Within the domains, learning at the higher levels is dependent on having attained prerequisite knowledge and skills at lower levels.[2] A goal of Bloom’s taxonomy is to motivate educators to focus on all three domains, creating a more holistic form of education.[1] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bloom’s_taxonomy)

The idea is to structure learning as simultaneous cognitive assimilation. Using given information, and understanding the intended application, we design our lesson plans to teach intellectual understanding and real-life, physical application at the same time. This approach saves time in the classroom and negates the need for flashcards and hours of homework.

Furthermore, our lesson plans based on Bloom’s Taxonomy are structured to include strategic variables that increase the depth of knowledge on a given topic. Your healthcare learners will be challenged to understand the idea on a cognitive level and to apply that understanding in different settings with different tools. Your students learn key concepts, standard procedures, and effective improvisation techniques all in one lesson.

Today’s healthcare industry is a fast changing environment that demands constant adaptation. Training healthcare learners requires education that can adapt just as fast. At Avidity Medical Design, we are dedicated to ensuring the highest quality education by using the most effective learning tools to produce students who are as detailed as they are innovative. Contact us to learn more about how we can design the most effective and engaging courses to bring your healthcare training to life.

Healthcare Education in “the Cloud” Pours Information Into Our Hands

How does “the cloud” enhance the educational experience of today’s healthcare professional? The cloud gives students unbridled access to the information they need to grow in the profession.

Gone are the days when flashcards were the only way to test a student’s knowledge. Technological innovations such as the smartphone, tablet and apps have transformed the landscape of healthcare education forever. The quest for healthcare knowledge is migrating to apps where information is available 24/7.

healthcare education in the cloudYour Health: There is an App For That

A report released by mobile industry analyst Research2Guidance predicts that by 2017, 3.4 billion people will have accessto tablets and smartphones with access to mobile healthcare apps. Of the 3.4 billion, 1.7 billion people will have downloaded them. To say that healthcare apps are popular is an understatement. That being said, how does the cloud and the mobile movement in general help hospitals train their staff for 21st century healthcare?

Raining Down Information

The cloud allows hospitals to reach physicians and other healthcare practitioners wherever they are. Being “in the cloud” also allows hospitals to train staff year round without the ebb and flow of information that comes from older forms of information sharing such as journals and conferences.The power of the cloud and mobile technology is undeniable. Knowledge is power and technology releases that power for the good of humanity.

Thirst For Knowledge

The availability of healthcare training apps has exploded over the last couples of years. Many nurses and healthcare professionals turn to their smartphones to acquire new information on drugs, diseases and procedures.

A study conducted by Wolters Kluwer Health’s Lippincott Williams Wilkins (LLW) of 3,900 nurses indicated in early 2012, 71 percent of nurses were already using smartphones professionally. Medical practitioners should be encouraged to download reputable healthcare applications and use them to increase their fund of knowledge and reduce the likelihood of medical errors. Here is a short list of apps that hospitals can use to improve patient care:

  1. Nursing Central
  2. NurseTabs: Fundamentals by AusQuinn
  3. NCSBN Learning Extension Medication Flashcards
  4. The Merck Manuals For Mobile
  5. Shots By STFM

 

E-Learning Platforms

The power of e-Learning helps hospitals stay current on emerging trends using the right healthcare platforms. Here is a brief overview of the most popular platforms available:

HealthStream Learning Center – The most widely adopted learning management system in the healthcare industry. An estimated 3.4 million healthcare workers actively use their system.

TidWiT Social Learning Solutions –  A learning platform that offers social healthcare solutions for medical providers. The platform is 100% cloud based.

There are a variety of approaches that hospitals can use to provide continuing education for healthcare professionals, whether they are nurses, physicians, coders, or CEOs. Cloud, apps, and e-Learning solutions are the future. Incorporating these solutions into a comprehensive continuing education program creates durable and long-lasting change for all healthcare professionals. Contact us today to discuss how we can bring your current healthcare training program into the future.

Hire a Healthcare Instructional Designer for Continuing Education

Finding the time to work on continuing education courses can be difficult within the confines of a medical office or hospital. However, developing the right healthcare courses does not have to be difficult. Working with Avidity Medical Design to create healthcare courses simplifies curriculum development, making it easier for all healthcare professionals to get the training they need.

healthcare instructional designers, healthcare instruction, healthcare certification coursesMany healthcare professionals need continuing education credits to maintain their certification or licensure. This means that healthcare courses need to include the most up-to-date information on changes in processes and procedures for specific healthcare specialties. Medical coders, for example, need to know how to accurately assign diagnosis codes in ICD-10 by October 1, 2014.

We can design continuing education courses for the traditional classroom, the online environment, or both. All training is Just-In-Time (JIT) training, meaning that healthcare professionals are given the essential information they need to get up to speed quickly, while minimizing disruption to their workday. With JIT, everyone gets the training they need to complete certification requirements and to immediately apply what they learn in the clinic, ER, ambulatory surgery center, ICU, or billing department, for example.

Contact us to learn how we can help your staff prepare for certification, maintain their current certification, or expand their skill set.

Avidity Medical Design can prepare your staff for upcoming certification exams or licensure renewal by combining a variety of instructional design methodologies to suit your needs.  With a healthcare instructional designer, every medical office can receive the highest level of training and improve patient care.