Pour Chris Smith Has Just Taken Term Paper

Pages: 7 (1848 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: ≈ 3  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Healthcare

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Chris Smith has just taken on the role of Executive Assistant at Faith Community Hospital. What Chris doesn't know is that several obstacles that lie in the path of its success are challenging the Hospital. As a whole, Faith Community has a staff of dedicated employees who wish to serve their patients as best they can. This strength is coupled with the management's desire to also provide a high-level of quality care. However, there are several weaknesses and threats that are affecting their operation negatively.

Faith Community Hospital is experiencing challenges that are often experienced by hospitals and other medical facilities, in the healthcare industry. The medical field is plagued with a multitude of grey areas, made even more complex due to the moralistic nature of the jobs, and the duties that employees must perform. In addition to this already difficult combination, an employee's personal belief system often affects their judgment, and makes matters even more complex.

To combat these contradictions in beliefs and job duties, hospitals typically have straightforward processes and procedures in place that employees can utilize to guide their decision making process. Faith Community Hospital has taken the first step in this process, in the development and distribution of their uniting mission statement. However, the remainder of their processes and procedures do not have the details necessary to ensure all employees make consistent decisions, when a conflict in morals and duties arises. Because of this lack of clarity, Faith Community has found several obstacles in their path of efficient and effective operations.

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One of the major problems Faith Community Hospital is facing is that each employee is interpreting their job duties, as well as their moral obligations, in a unique way. Again, this is not an uncommon occurrence in the medical industry, where employees must deal with life and death situations. Yet, without the clear guidance from Faith Community's management, these inconsistencies begin to build up and if they are not alleviated can become insurmountable.

Term Paper on Pour Chris Smith Has Just Taken on Assignment

Just as in any organization, each member that joins Faith Community has his or her own personal biases. These biases serve as a barrier to effective and efficient decision-making and can negatively affect critical thinking. Inconsistencies become a common occurrence, as Faith Community has found. These inconsistencies are then compounded upon by the emotions that employees encounter when providing, or not providing, care to their patients.

These inconsistent actions are found throughout the Faith Community team. Parents of an infant in the Neo-Natal Unit have requested that medical treatment not be administered to their child. The staff has consented to their wishes and because of this lack of action, Child Protective Services is trying to take custody of the infant (Author, year).

In another area of the hospital, Do Not Resuscitate directives were put into action. Normally this would be a plausible course of action, however, no written orders existed for this, as should have been. This is in sharp contrast to many of the other Faith employees who believe it is their duty to preserve life, and for this reason have actually disobeyed Do Not Resuscitate orders that were written and firmly in place. In both instances, the family members were in agreement with the course of action taken by the medical professionals, however, they may not have been what the patient had wished (Author, year).

The inconsistencies of Faith's professionals occur in a variety of other departments as well and add to the challenge. One of Faith's pharmacists has taken it upon themselves to fill prescriptions for uninsured patients, even when they are unable to pay for them. They have personally instituted a payment in installment plan that has not been approved by Faith's management (Author, year).

In addition to the rogue pharmacist, there are other staff members who feel money should not limit a person's ability to receive medical care. In fact, there are two counselors at Faith Hospital who are treating unauthorized patients pro bono publico. Yet, on the other hand, there are some employees who absolutely refuse to treat a patient unless their medical insurance has been confirmed (Author, year). Although each employee believes they are supporting Faith Community's mission statement, their individual biases are equating to vastly disparate decision, and are the root cause of Faith Community's troubles.

In addition to the challenge of personal biases affecting the decision making process, Faith Community is having significant financial troubles. Because of high fixed costs and decreased patient visits, Faith Community's costs per patient day have risen dramatically. If Faith Community is not able to increase their patient visits, they will have to reduce their fixed costs by at least 15%, simply to break even (Author, year).

Of course this dramatic decrease assumes that Faith Community is able to continue to collect medical fees at the current rate they are receiving. This is not certain. As such, if the reimbursements from medical insurance companies or government agencies decreases, it would compound the financial challenges being experienced. What is most disturbing for Faith Community's management is that they have little say in how much they are reimbursed for their services, and whether or not their current reimbursement schedule increases or decreases. If the HMOs, PPOs or other TLAs decide that reimbursements must be reduced, Faith Community's financial positioning may plummet beyond repair (Author, year).

Now that the problems facing Faith Community are brought to the forefront, one should determine which challenges they have direct control over, and which they do not. Obviously, Faith does have control over the disparate actions of their employees. They also have an amount control over the quantity of patient services they are able to charge for. In addition, patient care costs are under their control, including fixed costs. The only area that Faith Community does not have control over is the reimbursement rates that will be implemented by healthcare agencies. With this in mind, Faith Community's solutions should center on the three challenges they have some control over. Health care reform should only be taken up, once internal challenges have been overcome.

The first step in finding solutions is to examine two thinking barriers that inhibit (the) full problem-solving potential" (Kirby, Goodpaster, & Levine, 1999, p. 254). One is the desire to find a perfect solution to every problem. The perfect solution is a myth. There are typically many solutions with their own unique advantages and disadvantages that must be considered, and one should pick the best possible solution, for the given situation.

The second barrier is the myth of genius. One does not have to be a genius to come up with the best solution possible. Oftentimes, those without specific knowledge can be instrumental in finding the best solution, due to their creativity and their lack of preconceived notions (Kirby, Goodpaster, & Levine, 1999).

With this in mind, Faith Community has several different solutions open to it. Of course, as always, the hospital could simply do nothing, hoping that their patient visits and revenues increase and that the employees will provide consistent quality care, despite difficult decisions that must be made, and the track record of these being completely divergent from one another. Or Faith Community could decide that the industry has become too much for it to operate effectively, and therefore going out of business may be an option they consider. However, there are alternatives that serve the hospital and the patients better.

One of Faith Community's most pressing problems is that their employees are interpreting the mission statement in different ways, due to their own personal morals and belief systems. These decisions are often life and death, and as such should be remedied as quickly as possible. Towards this end, Faith Community must develop and implement a set of straightforward guidelines that pertain to the areas employees are having troubles with. These guidelines will then be utilized to help employees know exactly what to do when a conflict occurs.

These will, obviously, have to be tailored to Faith Community's management's desires. As an example, if management finds that a patient's wishes supercede all other wishes, then this should be clearly noted for employees to rely on. If a patient must have these wishes documented before they can be followed, then this also needs to be noted. The same holds true if Faith Community feels that the family is better suited to make treatment decisions. The main point is whatever Faith's management wants to have happen consistently, they must define clear processes and procedures that employees can follow, rather than simply relying on their own judgment.

This is especially true when dealing with minor children. Clear-cut policies and procedures have to be in place for hospital employees to fall upon, should the parent's wishes whether or not to treat a child be different from hospital policy.

Whether management determines to always protect the health of a minor, or always follow the parents wishes, clear and concise policies, will ensure that all hospital staff are making consistent, quality health care… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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