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Clinical Support Services
All clinical support services (CSSs) require different systems of classification that have goals for improvement, progress benchmarks, rewards, and opportunities for improvement (OFI) (White & Griffith, 2016). They have to be meticulously devised to fit each specific CSS. In order to keep all of them up-to-date health care organization (HCO) has to provide regular capital flow to promote continuous improvement. It is needed for increasing the quality of existing facilities as well as their size, providing modern medical equipment, and developing additional programs. Therefore, it can be argued that CSSs are associated with the highest capital expenditures (White & Griffith, 2016).
The network of accountability that keeps track of negotiation and integration processes is an important part of every HCO (White & Griffith, 2016). Accountability hierarchy is a structure that provides a mechanism for communication between different work teams and the governing board. It also performs the function of investment opportunities assessment (White & Griffith, 2016). Efficient HCOs have planning committees that are responsible for the evaluation of “competitive tests for investment opportunities” and function similarly to a process improvement team (PIT) (White & Griffith, 2016).
The finance department is in charge of capital funds, and it also plays a central role in the evaluation of individual capital investment opportunities. The mechanism of capital investment review allows meeting mission objectives, and it is especially critical for HCOs with limited capital funds (White & Griffith, 2016). The efficient review process takes into consideration the following criteria for the assessment of investment prospects: anticipated contribution to stated objectives, physical limitations, minimization of costs, implementation process, actual contribution to stated objectives (White & Griffith, 2016).
The CSS managers are in charge of replacing outdated equipment, introducing serious changes to programs, and controlling the annual budget. To this end, they have to evaluate investments that would contribute the most to the missions of the HCO’s (White & Griffith, 2016). Moreover, they also have to meet the owner’s expectations and justify capital investments in terms of feasibility and reasonability (Ginter, Duncan, & Swayne, 2013). Therefore, CSS managers have to assess investment opportunities, their benefits, operational performance measures that contribute to the community. They also have to be weighed against alternative approaches that would be taken if the proposals were not accepted.
Both capital and new programs budget associated with the involvement of operating, finance, and internal consulting units. The process of evaluating and managing project costs is tied to the network of different HCO’s departments including direct communication with a governing board (Ginter et al., 2013). The capital budget outlined by the finance unit must include expected expenditures for new services per each accounting period (White & Griffith, 2016). The finance department is also responsible for preparing a long-range financial plan and managing capital funds sources (White & Griffith, 2016).
It is a duty of the planning unit to overview the improvement cycle of any process revision (White & Griffith, 2016). The scope of a pilot test may substantially differ and depends on each particular project. All investments are usually divided into strategic and programmatic. Strategic programs influence several units simultaneously, whereas programmatic opportunities affect single service lines. Every year, well-managed HCOs review hundreds of programmatic investments that are ordered in terms of missions and visions, markets and demands, benefits, costs, resources and timing among other factors (White & Griffith, 2016).
Continuous Improvement and Budgeting
All CSSs have to be controlled by the HCO governing board. The role of the HCO manager is to enforce and implement accountability of all investment opportunities and existing projects. They conduct periodical rounding with main stakeholders of every CSS, review strategic guidelines, OFIs, PIC actions and participate in board decisions (Burns, Shortell & Kaluzny, 2011).
Moreover, the HCO manager is responsible for overseeing capital allocations and requests as well as ensuring adequate prolongation of all CSSs. They also have to facilitate resolution of interprofessional work issues. It is important to note, that even though arrangements with the existing CSS suppliers are expected to be renewed, it is a responsibility of the HCO manager to consider better alternatives (Burns et al., 2011).
The main function of the continuous improvement is to make sure that the HCO does not lag behind the developing world and continuously adapts to changing conditions of the market. The ability to adjust can be supported by setting annual goals that are tied to the trends in economy and technology. With ever-changing environment of the modern world, any problems in performance and efficiency of CSSs could become disabling if they are not identified quickly enough.
Therefore, long-term trends have to be predicted in order to avoid disruptions to the proper functioning of the HCO and achieve its stated missions. Budgeting process functions as a regulator of improvement planning and determines its financial feasibility. Financial management is responsible for the arrangement of all funding of the HCO, settling monetary obligations and controlling of costs. Numerous laws, binding contracts and regulations guide strategical financial planning of every medical organization (Savage & Fottler, 2009).
Burns, L., Shortell, S., & Kaluzny, A. (2011). Shortell and Kaluzny’s healthcare management. Clifton Park, NY: Delmar.
Ginter, P., Duncan, W., & Swayne, L. (2013). Strategic management of health care organizations. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass, Wiley.
Savage, G., & Fottler, M. (2009). Biennial review of health care management. Bingley: Emerald.
White, K., & Griffith, J. R. (2016). The well-managed healthcare organization. Chicago, IL: Health Administration Press.