Term Paper: Healthcare Management Like All Other Areas

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Healthcare Management

Like all other areas of human life, the health care system is continuing to evolve. The National Center for Health Care Leadership identifies several important factors in this regard. Under the main paradigm of a focus on wellness and preventive rather than reactive care, one of the elements is that the human genome continues to be better understood as worldwide researchers continue to investigate the issue. As a result, treatment will eventually become primarily preventive. Concomitantly, the issue of healthcare costs, resources and priorities will become increasingly problematic as the world's population increases. Furthermore, chronic diseases will become the focus of specialized medical centers, while the trend is increasingly towards integrating electronic technology in healthcare monitoring and data collection. I believe these trends do focus on the patient, as the trend appears to place increasing importance upon the quality of patient care. Economically, however, further hardship will be created by increasingly expensive healthcare technology, making it all the more difficult to provide an adequate level of healthcare to the poor and needy.

2. The main purpose of health services organizations is to optimize human health and provide access to medical care for all who need it. Specifically, this can be expounded into a variety of core functions:

Health situation monitoring and analysis; surveillance, research, control of risks to public health; health promotion; social participation and empowerment; development of policies and institutional capacity; and evaluating and promoting equitable access to health services. These functions are equally important, as they integrate to provide the public with fundamental health care services. None can therefore be distinguished from the others in terms of necessity.

Primarily, it is important that no member of the public be made to feel unworthy of attention by health care facilities. Necessary health care should be seen as a fundamental human right, and should therefore also be enforceable by the Constitution.

3. Being primarily focused upon human well-being, I believe that health care is primarily a social good and secondarily and economic good. The economic element of health care is undeniable, as the above-mentioned technological developments and research require significant funding. However, the focus of these remain human well-being rather than the economic and business sectors. In terms of this, I believe that the health care sector is obliged to provide a national insurance plan that guarantees access to all human beings. Certainly the opportunity to experience optimal health for a human lifetime is a fundamental right that should be guaranteed. This is as important under the constitution as the right to gainful employment and pursuing happiness. Although it might not always be realistically possible, like the other constitutional rights, the health care sector, together with the government, should at least provide all citizens with access to both affordable and high quality care.

4. Any company in the business world today is faced from time to time with the need for change and an alignment of their internal culture with the external environment. An appendix in an environmental document created by Shapiro et al. (2000), mentions the case of Mary Hitchcock Memorial Hospital, which is faced with a decentralized decision-making process while under pressure to obtain fast and effective decisions. In order to align the processes, the environmental staff formed a research team to investigate reasons for eliminating EtO as a sterilization process at the hospital. The categories they addressed include ethical, safety, liability, and environmental compliance, as well as cost-based arguments. The staff also obtained a cost analysis of different sterilization options in order to present a comparable or cheaper method of sterilization. This was then presented to top management, who were able to make the decision much faster and more effectively.

5. The content approach comprises four theories that focus on the paradigm of individuals who are motivated by their needs and their desire to fulfill these. Firstly, Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs identifies five levels of categories that progress from the basically physical to mental and psychological needs, including physiological, safety, social, esteem, and self-actualization needs. Alderfer's model simplifies Maslow's five needs levels to three: existence, relatedness, and growth. Thirdly, McClelland's Learned Needs focus more on the particular needs within the workplace, including needs for power, affiliation, and achievement. Each category involves a particular behavior type at the workplace in the pursuit of the need. The simplest of the four theories is Herzberg's Two-Factor Theory. The theory focuses simply on the satisfaction or dissatisfaction of needs. Intrinsic motivators then focus on job content, motivating the employee towards higher performance as a result of satisfaction from the work itself. Dissatisfaction results from the extrinsic job context, and should be prevented by providing enough remuneration, security, etc. Personally, the most appealing of the theories to me is Herzberger's for both its simplicity and its coverage of all work dynamics. Maslow's is the least appealing, as it covers too many irrelevant factors in terms of the employment context.

6. Management and leadership are interrelated terms, but not synonymous. In short, Management, according to ChangingMinds.org (2002-2007), focuses on managing the non-human aspect of business, while leaders lead people. The traditional management roles of planning, organizing, and controlling are therefore mainly the functions of management, as far as they involve issues and aspects, whereas staffing and directing, if they focus on people, are leadership functions. Effective managers are furthermore not always effective leaders, as a different skill set is needed for the two. Management requires a precise and business oriented mind, while leadership requires more interpersonal and communication skills. In order to manage a successful business, both management and leadership skills are necessary. Good managers can also appoint good leaders to fulfill the different functions appropriately.

A effective managers always effective leaders? Why or why not? What types of traits, skills, knowledge, and abilities are necessary for the leadership role, as opposed to the management role?

7. In the business and political world, many examples can be identified in which groupthink became problematic in terms of reaching the most effective and morally defensible solution to problems. One recent and very important example is the U.S. Government reaction to the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Almost immediately after the attacks, the PATRIOT Act was introduced, by which citizens were deprived of many privacy and free speech rights. Furthermore, citizens were discouraged from protesting against the "war on terrorism" and its implications for many innocent lives both locally and in Iraq and other countries.

An example from the business world is scandals such as that in which Enron was involved; the drive to increase the status of the company in the business world led to a groupthink paradigm that concealed financial records, exacerbating the scandal when these did come to light.

The above examples occur when functional conflict is not allowed. Dysfunctional conflict occurs when no party is willing to listen to or understand another viewpoint than his or her own. Functional conflict occurs when it reveals the shortcomings of the existing status quo and encourages change. When leaders discourage functional conflict, the company or country in question is in danger of becoming a dictatorship rather than a democracy. Furthermore, such an entity will reach stability to the point where not even favorable change is any longer possible. In a changing world, this could be detrimental to the business survival of a company.

8. In order to determine my team's stage of development, I will introduce myself and ask the group members questions on their ideas for implementing the actions for which they are appointed. I will take a secondary position in the conversation, simply facilitating the interaction and providing further leading questions when the group falls silent. This should provide me with an estimate of the group dynamic in order to determine the specific stage. A guarded and careful interaction for example would indicate that the group is in the forming stage, a tendency towards conflict and disagreement the storming stage, cooperation and resourceful planning the norming stage, with the final stage characterized by developing skills and giving feedback. To make the team more effective, I will use my findings in order to optimize the group's effectiveness and move them to the following stage. I will therefore strive towards cooperation and coordination rather than conflict. Because I am fairly new, I would avoid attempting to manage and lead right from the start.

Instead, I will encourage group members to share what had worked for them so far and build upon this information to establish my position.

9. A group can greatly benefit from a wide range of diversity. The greatest benefits is that a range of skill sets can provide the group with a wider choice of solutions to problems that they need to solve. Differentiation in a group also means different viewpoints. This could result in constructive conflict, eventually leading to the best possible solutions and strategies for the group. Furthermore, divergent skills, expertise, traits and abilities can be complimentary in that each member of the group can be assigned as leader in… [END OF PREVIEW]

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Healthcare Management Like All Other Areas.  (2008, February 28).  Retrieved May 20, 2019, from https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/healthcare-management-like-areas/323725

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