Voices: Regan Parker, Normal Counsel & Chief Public Affairs Officer, ShiftKey

Voices: Regan Parker, Normal Counsel & Chief Public Affairs Officer, ShiftKey

This text is sponsored by ShiftKey. On this Voices article, Expert Nursing Information sits down with Regan Parker, Normal Counsel & Chief Public Affairs Officer, ShiftKey, to study the ‘empowerment’ side of impartial work, and why it’s wanted to construct a extra sustainable and inclusive well being care workforce. She breaks down a number of the misconceptions that exist about impartial contractors in well being care, and he or she additionally explains what each employees and facility leaders want to grasp about employee classification, and distributors or companions when partaking in exterior work.

Expert Nursing Information: What profession experiences do you most draw from in your function immediately?

Regan Parker: ShiftKey is a two-sided market that matches impartial well being care professionals with open shifts at long-term care services and post-acute settings. Personally, assembly the professionals whose lives we’ve modified by way of our mannequin and expertise platform is what I really like most about my job. It’s really impactful after I work together with a single mother or an individual with a incapacity who tells me, “By way of your expertise, I can work, present for my household, and have true independence as a result of I can work after I wish to.” These are the issues which have the best impression, and that hold me motivated when challenges come up at work. I at all times keep in mind why I’m right here and who I do it for.

Discuss in regards to the ‘empowerment’ side of impartial work and why it’s wanted to construct a extra sustainable and inclusive well being care workforce. What wants to vary on the coverage degree to assist notice this imaginative and prescient?

Empowered and impartial work is essential for the long run, particularly in well being care. Bringing extra individuals into the workforce is critical to help the growing older inhabitants. The COVID pandemic worsened underlying problems with burnout, being overworked and underappreciated, main many nurses to go away the workforce solely. Most of those that left, in my view, didn’t go away as a result of they disliked the work, however quite as a result of dynamics of full-time employment, extra time and inflexible schedules.

Our imaginative and prescient to assist clear up the well being care disaster includes giving energy again to employees by recognizing and valuing their contributions. We imagine employees ought to select how, when and the place to work. By doing so, we see extra individuals returning to the workforce as a result of they’re really keen about affected person care. It’s the administrative burdens that pushed them away from it within the first place.

We’ve constructed a mannequin that helps and permits individuals to work on their very own phrases, which I imagine is the one approach to clear up the well being care workforce disaster. Concerning coverage adjustments, there’s a false impression that impartial employees lack the required abilities and {qualifications}, which isn’t true. These people have the identical certifications and credentials as all people else, and so they deliver invaluable expertise. All they need is the power to work on their very own phrases.

From a employee coverage perspective, we’d like legal guidelines that higher help this mannequin. The impartial contractor versus worker classification legal guidelines are actually grey, which makes it a bit bit difficult to function. We wish to do the suitable factor. We wish to help employees. We wish to give them this various mannequin. However wanting forward, the aim is to proceed to create clear and constant laws, insurance policies and choices that make impartial contract work extra accessible for individuals who wish to pursue it

How can impartial contract choices deliver extra licensed professionals again into the workforce, and the way is that addressing a number of the challenges we’re seeing within the well being care area immediately? The place does ShiftKey match into that equation?

Many employees selected to go away the workforce, and a youthful era is now rising with a unique mindset. They wish to make work match their life, not the opposite method round. This youthful era desires the liberty and adaptability to work on their very own phrases, wherever and every time they need, and for the pay they imagine they deserve. Our expertise facilitates that.

The well being care trade, specifically, has to embrace a brand new sort of employee. It wants to acknowledge the advantages of extremely educated, extremely certified employees who’re keen about what they do and may present glorious look after residents and sufferers. With out getting inventive and embracing expertise in these new fashions of labor, we can not clear up the disaster in well being care. It’s simply not attainable.

What are a number of the misconceptions that exist round impartial contractors in well being care?

I feel there are loads. I feel the well being care trade continues to be getting used to the thought. There are some misconceptions that impartial contractors are much less dedicated to their job and their sufferers — that they’re much less expert or educated, and that’s simply not true. These people have chosen to work on their very own phrases, which is the one distinction. They supply glorious providers to sufferers and residents, however the best way they work is totally different. There may be nothing totally different with their credentials, abilities or coaching.

One other false impression we frequently see is that impartial contractors are someway being taken benefit of, and no person of their proper thoughts would select to be a contractor as a substitute of an worker. We basically disagree with this notion. All employees and professionals are clever sufficient to make an knowledgeable determination about whether or not to be an impartial contractor or an worker. It’s a alternative, and these sensible people can choose to work independently if they want to take action. They will additionally select full-time employment, which is at all times an obtainable choice. We merely present one other alternative.

What do facility leaders want to grasp about employee classification and distributors or companions when partaking in exterior work?

We’ve seen scare techniques surrounding our mannequin, stemming from miseducation. To stop these fears, the most effective factor facility and neighborhood homeowners can do is analysis and guarantee they associate with an organization like ShiftKey, that understands this enterprise and the related misclassification dangers in and out. We have been conscious of those dangers from the beginning, and have developed merchandise, processes, applied sciences and in-house experience to reduce dangers for ShiftKey and all our shoppers.

We see ourselves as companions with our shoppers and we’ve a stake in defending them from as a lot threat as we are able to. It’s essential to guage the practices of the businesses you’re contemplating and partnering with, guaranteeing they perceive this situation. I joined ShiftKey as a result of I really like what we do and I really like expertise. They introduced me on for my experience on this space, and I’m deeply concerned in creating merchandise, processes, and insurance policies to make sure we function ethically. Not all corporations prioritize this, so it’s essential to ask questions and totally examine potential companions.

What do licensed professionals have to find out about employee classification and the way totally different teams might categorize workforces? What in regards to the protections related to totally different workforce teams?

If you’re a licensed skilled utilizing a platform like ShiftKey, it’s actually essential to grasp what’s totally different about that relationship. You’re principally in enterprise for your self. The nice half about that’s you may deduct bills, which is nice in your taxes. However total it’s a totally different relationship. You’re not assured work. We don’t take taxes out of your examine. You’re going to should pay these by yourself in quarterly installments because the IRS requires you.

One other advantage of being an impartial contractor with ShiftKey is the power to hold your personal insurance coverage. You’ll be able to deliver your personal or buy it by way of our platform. Moreover, we’ve developed an exquisite partnership with Stride Well being to supply entry to advantages like well being care and incapacity protection, which aren’t usually obtainable to contractors. Stride Well being helps you discover appropriate plans, together with well being and dental insurance coverage, to help our neighborhood.

One of many coverage challenges that frustrates me most is that present US legal guidelines tie employee advantages and protections to employment standing. As an organization, we’re unable to supply advantages and protections to employees resulting from these legal guidelines. We’re engaged on discovering new methods to help our employees and supply entry to advantages, even when it means pulling collectively totally different choices. Our aim is to make sure our employees really feel knowledgeable, supported, and have entry to crucial advantages. We’re making an attempt to ascertain a unique method of doing issues.

End this sentence: “Within the expert nursing trade, 2023 would be the 12 months of…”


Editor’s Observe: This interview has been edited for size and readability.

ShiftKey permits suppliers to empower caregivers with real-time entry to hundreds of open PRN shifts to allow them to construct their preferrred schedules. To study extra about how ShifKey may help suppliers allow caregivers to select from shifts primarily based on their present or most well-liked location and bid their desired fee, go to https://www.shiftkey.com/.

The Voices Collection is a sponsored content material program that includes main executives discussing traits, subjects and extra shaping their trade in a question-and-answer format. For extra data on Voices, please contact (email protected).

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