Daily CEO Update
Responding to COVID-19 has brought out the very best traits in our culture.
As new information surfaces, we find ourselves making daily shifts in our operations.
Change like this is never easy. Yet we feel your trust.
Each of us is on the same team. No single job is more significant than another. This is what it means to act as a unit … our rallying cry at Cleveland Clinic.
It is as important today as it was in 1921.
Messaging is crucial. Actions must be taken for the right reasons by all caregivers. We have an opportunity to lead and model behaviors. This requires compassionate understanding.
In Ohio, we have now postponed nonessential procedures.
The state issued guidelines this week to define what is essential. Those guidelines are:
- Lifesaving surgery
- Preserving function of organs or limbs
- Reducing risk of metastasis or progression of disease
- Reducing risk of severe symptoms
This change will protect caregivers and prepare us for a potential surge of patients with COVID-19. During a surge, it will be critical to access hospital beds, equipment and supplies.
As a result of these changes, we count on your participation in other areas of the organization where you are most needed. We are currently staffing a labor pool for Northeast Ohio Cleveland Clinic locations.
Thank you for your teamwork and flexibility.
Over the past week, we have seen the effects of COVID-19 on the way we practice. We saw very high volumes on Express Care Online as we direct patients who have symptoms to call in.
We have since worked with American Well to reinforce the platform. We are also directing patients to use MyChart for an eVisit.
As we take care of others, we must also take care of ourselves. We have published a number of caregiver resources to aid with resiliency.
These tools will help you:
- have productive virtual meetings
- manage stress at work and home
- navigate change
- and communicate with empathy
Please continue to show kindness and compassion toward each other. It keeps us together as a team.
Cleveland Clinic will help you come to work and do your best while you are here.
This pandemic has created unforeseen situations for families. Therefore, we are permitting caregivers to use up to 40 hours of paid time off beyond a zero balance.
Please be mindful of others on the team, as well as our patients. They rely on us to provide the safest care.
We continue to update guidelines on personal protective equipment for specific patient encounters.
By following them, you will stay safe and help us conserve PPE, which is an important resource.
Also, do not bring in your own equipment. We should only use supplies from trusted sources, and only those who need to use PPE should wear it.
During challenging times, we see the good in people shine through. Many have asked how they can help with the pandemic. One way they can help is to give blood.
We partnered with the American Red Cross on a blood drive this Friday. I will be giving blood then.
While there is no evidence of COVID-19 being transmitted through a blood transfusion, the Red Cross is taking extra precautions to ensure safe blood drives.
Please check the intranet for more information about blood drives coming to our communities.
As we navigate the pandemic, we remain guided by simple principles.
Treat patients and each other like family. Treat this organization as our home.
We feel an incredible sense of responsibility for our patients, fellow caregivers and communities.
They are who we serve. Meeting their needs is our calling. And we will do so safely.
Thank you very much for your dedication.
Tom Mihaljevic, MD
CEO and President
We Are Now Checking Ohio Caregivers Temperature
We Are Now Checking Ohio Caregivers’ Temperature on Your Way Into Work
On March 18, 2020, Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine encouraged organizations to begin taking employees’ temperature when they arrive at work in an effort to identify anyone who is becoming ill.
Cleveland Clinic has established a temperature scan process to align with these recommendations and to protect our patients and caregivers.
Beginning at 7 p.m. tonight, March 19, 2020, Cleveland Clinic caregivers will complete a thermal temperature scan each day when arriving to work. This process will be rolled out at all Cleveland Clinic Ohio patient care locations by Sunday, March 22.
How the Process Works
- When entering a Cleveland Clinic facility, caregivers will receive a thermal scan of their foreheads.
- If the scanner detects a temperature of 100.4 or higher, you will be asked to step out of line to sanitize your hands and put on a mask and gloves.
- You will then be asked to return home and follow your department call-off process.
- You will then need to call Occupational Health (216.445.8246) for next steps on screening and/or testing for COVID-19.
- As you wait for Occupational Health to communicate next steps, you will continue to be paid and accrue benefits during this approved COVID-19 absence.
You will also be provided a handout on how to follow this process if you are asked to return home after a scan.
We are evaluating locations in other states where Cleveland Clinic serves patients.
Thank you for your cooperation with this process and for helping to contain the spread of COVID-19.
Managers: Labor Pool to Reassign Caregivers to Areas of Critical Need
Cleveland Clinic leaders,
While some services are on hold or experiencing declining volumes due to COVID-19, other areas are ramping up and need additional caregivers to serve patients. We are committed to keeping our caregivers employed and doing meaningful work. In addition, we are committed to our mission and highest calling to take care of our patients.
As a result, we have established a labor pool to help ensure continuity of work for our caregivers and meet the organization’s need to staff critical areas that are experiencing increased activity.
As we continue efforts to contain the COVID-19 virus, the labor pool will help place caregivers where they are most needed throughout our Northeast Ohio locations. (Florida managers: please refer to local guidance from your HR teams on staffing a labor pool.)
Managers should first try to make work reassignments locally within their institute, division or hospital. Local reassignments should be made in collaboration with your HR business partner.
For caregivers who cannot be reassigned locally, beginning today, March 19, managers will be able to submit the names of caregivers who can be reassigned to a broader labor pool based on diminished work load using a “request for donating labor” form through Workday. In addition, managers will use a “request for labor” form through Workday for staffing needs in critical areas.
This job aid details the steps in Workday for donation of five or fewer caregivers. Large caregiver lists may be coordinated through your HR business partner.
These reassignments will be temporary — normally at least one week in duration — as needs present going forward. Our goal is to serve patients and to keep our caregivers working whenever possible.
On a daily basis, the labor pool team will review and prioritize all requests. Managers and caregivers will be notified of changes in assignments. The labor pool team includes representatives from across the system.
Physician leaders will be coordinating any reassignments for physicians and advanced practice providers.
Negative PTO Balance Allowed During COVID-19 Response
Your presence to take care of our patients and maintain a safe environment for fellow caregivers and all who come through our doors remains our number one priority. Patient care revolves around teamwork – and you are part of the Cleveland Clinic team.
We also know that in some cases we need to make exceptions. Due to evolving developments with COVID-19 precautions, effective immediately and until further notice, caregivers will be eligible to use PTO beyond their current balance up to a total of negative forty (-40) hours.
Caregivers whose PTO balance does not cover necessary time away from work should continue to follow their standard process to request time off. Our payroll and timekeeping systems have been adapted to accommodate a negative PTO balance.
Once COVID-19 precautions are lifted, we will return to our standard policies. Caregivers will continue to accrue and have the opportunity to earn back PTO hours in the future. More information on this will be forthcoming.
Please note, caregivers drawing on a negative PTO balance of up to 40 hours will continue to accrue PTO while away from work.
We are making this provision for your well-being, and ask that everyone be mindful of the critical need for all caregivers to work as scheduled wherever possible.
Free COVID-19 Screening Tool Now Available
Free COVID-19 Screening Tool Now Available on clevelandclinic.org
Cleveland Clinic has launched a free COVID-19 screening tool. Find out your risk level, based on your symptoms and travel, and get the most appropriate care recommendations. Caregivers can use the tool themselves and share the link with patients, family and friends.
Follow these steps:
- Visit http://clevelandclinic.org/coronavirus
- Click “Start your screening now”
- A questionnaire window will open
- Answer questions to receive your recommendations
Please note: Older browsers, such as IE11 (Internet Explorer 11), will not be able to run this tool. Newer browsers will work best, including the latest releases of Microsoft Edge, Google Chrome, Firefox and Safari.