Essay: Suburban health center

Pages: 12 (4354 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 4  ·  Level: Master's  ·  Topic: Healthcare  ·  Buy This Paper

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[. . .] In fact, people want better drugs and better treatments, so you don't want to reduce the level of innovation just to keep costs in line. There are some fantastic technologies in development, and if they cost more, so be it. But I guess there is a need for some flexibility where people receive older treatments if they can't afford the latest innovations.

Another challenge going forward is the issue of rural health care. While health care capacity in the big cities is more or less acceptable (there are exceptions), people in rural areas often struggle to find doctors -- especially specialists -- and travel longer distances when they do (Magilvy & Congdon, 2000). Furthermore, they often have to travel to big cities for specialized care as rural hospitals are underfunded and therefore have less technology than the big urban hospitals. The rural population skews older than the urban, which creates an even bigger need for health care capacity in rural areas, but there are no major plans to govern the distribution of health care providers to meet this need. Hence, a crisis.

A third major issue over the course of the next five years is the uncertainty surrounding the Affordable Care Act. This act brought about many changes to health care, especially on the insurance side. Now, there is tremendous political risk that steps can be undertaken to unwind the ACA and its key provisions. The problem of course is that the people who would repeal the Act or unwind its provisions do not have a meaningful plan to replace the ACA. The health care industry has just become used to the ACA, and its destruction would throw the industry back into a state of chaos, would remove millions of people from the health care system at great risk to their health, and would generally create a health care crisis in this country. The fact that the health care community has no idea what is going to happen only makes it worse because nobody can plan -- uncertainty is not a good thing when running an organization and the current political state of the ACA is one of extreme uncertainty.

' The fourth major issue in health care right now is what the aging of America means for health care. Baby boomers are in early retirement, or are entering retirement. They very much at an age where their health care needs begin to escalate. This means changes in demand for health care. Not only is their greater demand, but what kinds of things are demanded will also change. Today, we need to start planning for when this large cohort of people enters elder care -- do we have enough capacity in our care homes? How much capacity should be build, knowing that the Gen X is coming behind them with far fewer people? To what degree is home care an option for the boomers? This isn't just a matter of making sure there's enough capacity in hospitals, because care needs change as people age, and ultimately figuring out what the aging of the baby boomers means to health care and how the health care community should respond are all critical issues relating to the aging of America.

A final issue that we have to look at in health care going forward for the next five years is the staffing crisis. This is in addition to the rural crisis, which obviously has a staffing element. But there has been a shortage of nurses for a long time in this country, and it is necessary to look at how as health care managers we can attract and retain talent. I cannot solve the nation-wide nursing shortage, but I can ensure that my team has all the nursing talent that we need. This isn't easy, however, because there is intense competition for quality nurses. But that's part of my job -- to ensure that the nursing shortage does not hinder my own organization.

Section B.

Executive Summary

The case focuses around a supervisor, Lawson, who is new to the job. One of her nurses, Wilson, is a problem. There are many areas where Wilson's performance is unsatisfactory and her continue employment not only creates discord among the staff but it also lowers the performance of the entire team. At present, Lawson has done some research into the issue, but she ultimately does not have a lot of facts at her disposal and she does not necessarily know anything about the underlying issues either.

Essential Elements

The major players here are Lawson, who is the supervisor, and Wilson, who is the nurse with whom everybody has a problem. Lawson is new, and Wilson has been around long enough to establish some seniority. They both work at a municipal health care facility, and Lawson does not technically have the ability to fire Wilson. The issues with Wilson have seemingly been going on for years, but Lawson cannot worry about the past, or deal with past issues based on anecdotal evidence.

Identification of the Problem

For Lawson, the issue at hand is the performance of Wilson in her duties. This is the major problem for a couple of reasons. First, Lawson is responsible for the unit's performance. Second, Wilson's ability to perform the duties required of her appears to be poor. Third, Wilson's shortcomings and behavior are having a detrimental effect on the team, on morale, and in particular her propensity to leave during critical situations means that the team has to cover for her even when they do not have the capacity to do so. This puts patients at risk. So for Lawson, this is really more about team performance and about patient outcomes than it is about any one person on her staff.

The secondary problems are the individual issues that people have with Wilson. Ultimately, these are just a body of evidence that can be used to build a case to remove Wilson. That Lawson does not have the ability to remove Wilson directly is definitely a secondary problem here. But she can overcome that problem with enough evidence. So there is evidence of tardiness, of misprioritizing tasks, poor communication, failure to perform to the required standards and failure to take responsibility for poor performance. Each of these on its own would be cause for management intervention. When they are all wrapped up in a single employee, then it is definitely cause for managerial intervention. The intervention at this point cannot be focused on any one issue -- dealing with the individual issues is not appropriate when they are all common to one person.

Magnitude and Significance.

Not being able to fire Wilson is not actually a big problem, because if Lawson cannot then somebody else can. Lawson would simply need to present the case. So that is not an important problem and one that can be remedied fairly easily.

Wilson's performance is a major problem. As said, each individual violation is not actually that important -- Wilson overall has so many problems that tackling one or two of the more important ones is not even going to address anything. Wilson will still be a poor performer and will still be doing harm. A strategy to reduce the harm that Wilson does to the organization only makes sense if Lawson literally cannot do anything to have Wilson removed, but we do not know that yet.

So the only problem that remains is that Wilson works for the organization, and is such a poor performer on so many levels that organizational outcomes and patient outcomes are both affected. This is a major problem in its significance. Patient outcomes are particularly important because legal action against the organization could be catastrophic. Thus, failure to take action against somebody whose incompetence is putting patients at risk ultimately creates catastrophic risk for the entire health system. The magnitude therefore runs into the tens of millions of dollars, should somebody die or require lifelong care. Punitive damages can be substantial. Not to mention, somebody dying or suffering great injury as the result of incompetence brings about tremendous human suffering.

Prioritizing the Problems

The most important problem is dealing with Wilson. This is not a matter necessarily of firing Wilson, but it is a matter of eliminating the downsides to having Wilson on staff. That means learning more. Lawson cannot fire Wilson without building a strong case, which would include documented verbal and written warnings, empirical evidence of performance below expected standards for the job, and other fact-based evidence to make the case that Wilson should be removed. This material is important from a legal perspective. So there are two major priorities here initially, and the first is to build the body of evidence against Wilson -- start gathering the facts in preparation of removing Wilson.

The second is to actually sit down and talk to Wilson. Now, Wilson is not helping herself with… [END OF PREVIEW]

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Suburban health center.  (2016, November 20).  Retrieved July 23, 2019, from https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/suburban-health-center-case-study/1533087

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"Suburban health center."  Essaytown.com.  November 20, 2016.  Accessed July 23, 2019.
https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/suburban-health-center-case-study/1533087.