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AI Startup vflok Connects Caregivers, Making Shift Scheduling a Human-Centered Experience for Nurses
[April 30, 2024]

AI Startup vflok Connects Caregivers, Making Shift Scheduling a Human-Centered Experience for Nurses

INDIANAPOLIS, April 30, 2024 /PRNewswire/ -- Catalyst by Wellstar, the first-of-its-kind innovation company and venture firm created by Wellstar Health System, one of the largest healthcare systems in Georgia, has partnered with leading venture builder High Alpha Innovation to launch vflok, a revolutionary workforce optimization solution that places connected communities of nurses at the center of the scheduling process.

Introducing vflok, a workforce optimization solution that places nurses at the center of the shift scheduling process.

Nurses are the backbone of the U.S. healthcare system and at the forefront of patient care. However, they are leaving the industry at alarming rates. The magnitude of this problem led Catalyst to engage nurses to better understand why these resignations are happening. A top reason shared was their schedules. Specifically, they cited an inability to personally shape their schedules, limited or no flexibility, and a lack of scheduling process transparency.

The impact of this problem is staggering. Interactive Health's latest State of US Nursing Report1 found that 23% of nurses are likely to quit in 2024. Meanwhile, the 2024 NSI National Health Care Retention & RN Staffing Report2 discovered nurse turnover costs rose by an average of 7.5% in the past year to $56,300 per nurse. This resulted in the average hospital losing roughly $3.9 million to $5.8 million annually.

Vflok will help solve this problem by embedding advanced machine learning models and generative AI into the scheduling workflow. This will empower nurses to create communities where they can shape their schedules together, arrange in-system coverage when unexpected events happen, and eliminate the opaque nature of schedule development.

Ultimately, vflok's goal is to deliver work schedules that fit into a nurse's life, instead of asking nurses to fit their lives into a work schedule.

"Nurse leaders want all nurses to feel valued and heard," said High Alpha Innovation CEO Elliott Parker. "Nurse managers have had the impossible task of factoring complex floor dynamics, individual preferences, and last-minute changes to create fair and balanced schedules. Today's enterprise scheduling systems provide macro workflow tools but lack the ability to deliver truly personalize scheduling experiences. This is where vflok's AI-powered solution fits in."

"The tools currently available to nurses and nurse managers don't reflect the mission-driven compassion that nurses exhibit every day in caring for their patients," said Dr. Hank Capps, FAAFP, EVP and Chief Information & Digital Officer, Wellstar Health System, and President of Catalyst by Wellstar. "Using vflok will help nurses care for nurses by making it easy to find and arrange in-system coverage, and free nurse managers to spend more time caring for their teams and patients rather than on administrative tasks. This intuitive approach will transform scheduling from a moment of tension to a moment of connection. Catalyst is proud to have worked alongside High Alpha Innovation to bring this long-overdue, game-changing technology to market."

"Nurses are the backbone of our care delivery system," said Dr. Susan Grant, Wellstar Health System Executive Vice President, Chief Experience Officer, and Chief Nurse Executive. "Hearing the voices of nurses in the development of a product that will change their lives and the lives of our patients is truly differentiated. With tools like vflok, we will continue to reduce administrative burden and help our nurses do more of what they became nurses to do: care for patients."

Wellstar will pilot Vflok in Q3 2024 to measure impact, plan a system-wide rollout, and introduce this transformative concept to other health systems. Vflok will be led by CEO John P. Sheehan, a multi-exit HealthTech and Digital Health entrepreneur, and Chief Technology & Product Officer David Sommers, a technology and innovation leader with deep expertise in machine learning, AI, and the development and scaling of healthcare and consumer applications.


1 "Celebrating Milestones and Inspiring Change: Insights from Incredible Health's Fifth Annual State of US Nursing Report," March 14, 2024
2 "2024 NSI National Health Care Retention & RN Staffing Report", March 2024

About High Alpha Innovation

High Alpha Innovation is an Indianapolis-based venture builder that partners with corporations, universities, and entrepreneurs to create and launch advantaged startups. Its dedicated team of company builders, strategists, and designers apply a proven playbook — pioneered by High Alpha — to help the world's leading organizations innovate through systematic startup creation. For more information, visit or check out @highalphainno on X.

About vflok

Built in Atlanta, vflok is an inclusive scheduling platform designed to give nurses a greater voice in the scheduling process. Powered by advanced computational models and Generative AI, Vflok's mission is to reduce administrative burden(s) and improve daily work experience for nurses and nurse managers, ultimately resulting in higher nurse retention and lower temporary staffing costs for hospitals. vflok is a proud partner of the Wellstar Health System, Catalyst by Wellstar and High Alpha Innovation. For more information, visit

About Wellstar

At Wellstar, people are at the center of everything we do. We are nationally recognized for our personal, high-quality care, inclusive culture, and exceptional doctors and team members. We provide access to compassionate, high-quality care through our: 11 hospitals; 325+ medical office locations; 11 cancer centers; 91 rehabilitation centers; 35 imaging centers; 18 urgent care locations; 5 health parks; 3 hospice facilities and 1 retirement village. As a nonprofit health system, we thoughtfully reinvest in prevention, wellness programs and charity care. To learn more about how we care for the communities we serve, visit

About Catalyst by Wellstar

Catalyst by Wellstar is the first-of-its-kind innovation company and venture firm created by one of the largest health systems in Georgia. We build better healthcare by harnessing problems, creating solutions, and partnering across industries to deploy a true ecosystem of care. For more information, visit

Media Contact: Lauren Kellum, [email protected] 

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SOURCE High Alpha Innovation

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