A new checklist (click here to download) is available to help public health departments evaluate the appropriateness of sharing staff among two or more jurisdictions and to communicate about staff sharing arrangements with elected and appointed government officials.
The tool outlines important considerations related to logistics, governance, and organizational culture. The checklist has been organized into five sections, each corresponding to an action that is critical to successful staff sharing arrangements.
Staff Sharing in Public Health: A Checklist for Communicating with Elected and Appointed Officials was developed by SLGE with support from the Center for Sharing Public Health Services.
“This checklist comes at a time when local health departments are looking for innovative approaches to improve efficiency and effectiveness of services while containing costs. One strategy we are seeing is sharing of personnel who hold essential skill sets, whether on a one-time or ongoing basis,” said Rivka Liss-Levinson, Ph.D., SLGE director of research. “Staff sharing arrangements, while not yet common, have the potential to be applied to a range of local government departments, enhancing an array of services in addition to public health,” she said.
Sharing personnel, positions, or services can address existing staff shortages, help jurisdictions make the most of available resources, enhance flexibility, improve communication and coordination, and even add capacity for more or improved services. While there is no one-size-fits-all approach to staff sharing given how much local health departments vary in size, geographic location, governance structure, finances, and organizational culture, the checklist is inclusive of a variety of situations.
The checklist follows a recent SLGE report, Staff Sharing Arrangements for Local Public Health, available here. This report examines case studies of three cross-jurisdictional staff sharing arrangements in local public health departments as a means to expand organizational capacity, better manage expenditures, and contain or address existing or emerging issues.
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