We identified two opportunities for improvement in our human resources processes – improving the pre-hire preparation of clinical team members and sustaining engagement in interested candidates who either were not quite ready to work for us or for whom we did not have a current vacancy. Our so-called ‘Mentor Program’ helps to address those opportunities.

After an initial screening by human resources and an interview by a member of the Operations team and the Clinical/Education team, candidates who meet set experience and qualification requirements and who show the potential to be a good fit for the organization are offered the opportunity to participate in the Mentor Program. Participation is totally voluntary – it is certainly possible to work at Boston MedFlight without having been in the Mentor Program, and participation is also no guarantee of future emjployment. The goal is a mutually beneficial professional development opportunity that helps improve the qualifications of potential applicants for nursing and paramedic positions. Participants are guided through steps to progress toward meeting application qualifications and gain a better understanding of the critical care transport environment, workplace, and culture. The program allows both the participant and Boston MedFlight to evaluate organizational and cultural alignment prior to a commitment.

Participants are assigned a staff member as a mentor/coach and point-of-contact. They complete multi-modal vehicle ride-alongs, attend case review meetings, and participate in other educational opportunities such as the Fundamental Critical Care Support Course (both adult and pediatric), a Mechanical Ventilation Course, an EKG course, and the STABLE program. Didactic materials allow the participant and mentor to review key concepts of physiology, medical care, and operations in a progressive and structured fashion. Participants are mentored through the process of obtaining credentials and experience, and their progress tis racked and evaluated.

The program is co-administered by Clinical Care and Human Resources. We have identified additional benefits in engagement for the staff who participate as mentors and in facilitating the enculturation process for participants who are subsequently hired.

Michael Frakes, APRN, CCNS, CFRN, CNPT, EMTP, FACHE, is Director of Clinical Care and Director of Organizational Quality at Boston MedFlight

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