A new idea has been brought to light in the health care service this month, by an endocrinologist who has come up with a great new way to help improve diabetes care in hospitals – an educational slot machine which will quiz nurses and allow then to win time off if they get the answers right, using a random variable reward to uphold the slot game element and allowing the nurses to be rewarded for learning things correctly.
Dr Bradley Eilerman had noticed that nurses are often unsure about how to use insulin and whether or not they are taking the right course of action, which leads to delays and may in fact prevent patients from getting the right care that they need. “Insulin orders are frequently questioned in the hospital,” he said. “Nurses are sometimes uncomfortable giving insulin doses.” He decided that his slot machine games could give them a chance to learn better and learn more, and presented his idea at the Innov8 for Health Idea Expo in Cincinnati. He won $1000 for presenting the Winservice app, which seems to have been approved by those at the conference.
The idea would be that every time a nurse using the app got a question right, she could get a random reward, such as a minute of time off to be redeemed later on. “There would be a progressive element, so sometimes it would be 5 minutes or 30 minutes,” Eilerman explained. “Maybe once a quarter some would win a week.” The PTO that was offered in the program could be set up so that it was equal to or less than the time spent in continuing education classes that the healthcare systems are already offering, meaning that the hospitals would not lose out or have to put up with staff shortages if everyone was winning too much time off. Rather than putting money down as a stake, in essence the nurses would have to bet with their own knowledge, something which is of course far more valuable if they are able to get it right and win the prizes.