February 5, 2024

Keynote: Staffing models built for the future—Improving efficiencies and profitability of the surgical suite

Editor's Note

The future landscape of perioperative nursing and how healthcare organizations are addressing workforce shortages—particularly through the engagement of temporary staff and travelers—make up an intricate puzzle. Karen Grimley, PhD, MBA, RN, FACHE, NEA-BC, chief nurse executive at UCLA Health, will close the OR Business Management Conference by raising critical questions concerning the sustainability and ethical considerations of relying on travelers to fill gaps in the workforce.

Staffing and the staffing crisis, which has been exacerbated by the continued COVID-19 pandemic and the financial strains health facilities are still seeing, has undergone significant evolution, prompting a reevaluation of traditional staffing models. Moreover, the healthcare industry stands at a crossroads, as whether the reliance on travelers will solidify into a permanent staffing strategy is evaluated. For instance, legislative reforms aimed at regulating staffing agencies' fees and preventing price gouging are under scrutiny, and potential policies that may significantly alter nurse staffing ratios are on the horizon. Such changes could herald a new era in healthcare delivery, emphasizing not just the quantity but the quality of care provided by nursing staff.

Dr Grimley will be pushing attendees to:

  • Unveil effective strategies for managing transient staff, ensuring that patient safety and quality of care remain uncompromised despite workforce fluidity
  • Identify the steps necessary for organizational change, guiding participants on how to right-size their staffing models to meet the demands of the modern healthcare landscape effectively
  • Provide actionable concepts to address and overcome workforce challenges, focusing on enhancing the efficiencies and profitability of the surgical suite.

These will not only involve tactical staffing adjustments but also a strategic overhaul of how workforce planning aligns with the broader objectives of healthcare organizations. As Dr Grimley walks through these themes, attendees will walk away from the last day of the conference armed with insights into navigating the complexities of the current staffing crisis, leveraging innovative solutions to build a resilient, adaptable, and ethical workforce strategy. This presentation will not just be about addressing immediate staffing needs but about envisioning a future where healthcare staffing is both sustainable and conducive to the highest standards of patient care.


Do you have unique staffing models that are helping to address shortages? Other creative staffing solutions? We would love to hear about it! Email me at [email protected]



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