Ernő Rubik, the Hungarian inventor who invented the famous Rubik’s cube puzzle, once said, “The problems of puzzles are very near the problems of life.” In both puzzles and in life, forethought and insight earlier avoids being cornered into limited, poor choices later. Anyone who has scheduled a medical group and has tried solving a Sudoku puzzle would merit this analogy. Lightning Bolt NSight scheduler is an innovative system that solves the complex puzzle of scheduling.
While alternative products available in the market only provide an electronic medium for viewing/entering scheduling data, Lightning Bolt NSight produces the best schedule possible by thinking deeply, often millions of steps ahead, to meet both institutional and individual needs.
The scheduling needs of physician groups are unique. What they do have in common is that schedulers often find that the seemingly simple task of assigning providers to assignments or shifts can be overwhelmingly complex. The scheduling problem often starts out easy. Initially, when the schedule is blank, schedulers have a great deal of freedom in scheduling choices and the initial decisions are relatively easy. However, as you get towards the end of the schedule, schedulers find that they are backed up against a corner with limited and undesirable options. Often schedulers would realize that some of the earlier choices were, in retrospect, not the best. A simple change leads to a domino effect of changes and before you know it, you are back to square one! In Chaos theory, this is known as the “Butterfly Effect.” If you have ever scheduled a medical group, then you have experienced the Butterfly Effect.
Are not computers smart enough to produce good schedules? If people can eventually create satisfactory schedules, software systems should also produce equally good or better schedules, right? Until recently, the answer is emphatically and perhaps surprisingly, “No!!!” The methods used by software systems available in the market simply and poorly mimic what a human scheduler might do by hand. Systems available in the market create schedules very quickly, and also very poorly! At the end of a (long) day, they provide at best an electronic medium for what is done by hand. Certainly, an electronic medium offers advantages just as modern word processors offer efficiency over handwriting. We would also agree that centralized web applications enable collective modification and viewing of schedules. That’s useful and Lightning Bolt NSight provides that.
However software systems, we feel, can and should do more. We can confidently say that Lightning Bolt NSight is the first system that really solves the unique scheduling puzzle of medical groups. Lightning Bolt NSight thinks deeply from the beginning, often looking millions of steps ahead, to avoid being cornered into poor choices at the tail end of the scheduling process. With Lightning Bolt NSight, you can create the best schedule possible!
So what does this mean for your medical group? Below are some common problems faced in scheduling medical groups and how Lightning Bolt NSight solves them.
University Scheduling Sample Rules/Requirements
Track and equally distribute the total number of weekend calls, holiday weekend calls, holiday calls, and Thursday calls based on FTE values of individual providers.
Maximize number of non-working weekends between weekend calls.
Do not schedule Dr. Jones for more than X times for 7p-11pm shifts during any period consisting of Y days.
If no regular provider is available (because of day off, vacation, or worked previous weekend on call), schedule a contract provider or a moonlighter.
Each physician should be at outreaches two to three times a month.
First call slot does the last available call slot, second call slot does next to last available call slot. Available number of call slots varies depending on the number of doctors on vacation.
If a provider works on a late shift, do not schedule that provider for early shift the next morning.
Providers who work OR prefer to work with different provider every week.
No consecutive days on primary call.