Effective communication is a vital aspect of healthcare. According to Namrata Palta (2006), effective communication in healthcare provides practical ways of enhancing communication between health professionals and patients. Swayne et al. (2012) argues that healthcare organisations are adapting to structures that provide the design of both the functional structure and lateral structure.
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According to Swayne et al. (2012), organisations should implement a model that facilitates cross-unit communication, coordination, and collaboration. Communication between medical staffs and patients must be precise and effective in order to ensure the mutual benefits for all parties as well as for patients (Swayne et al., 2012). This paper examines the organisation models that best describes my healthcare organisation. This paper will also examine the workplace communication techniques used within the healthcare organisation.
Which organisational model best describes your organisation?
Our clinic is an extremely complex organisation that is composed of different Departments including CEO, Clinical Department, Marketing Department, Human Resource Department, Legal Department, Information system Department, and Finance and Accounting Department. The components within clinical Department include Medicine, Surgery, Obstetrics, paediatrics and Clinical Services. Therefore, the organization model that best describes our clinic is the matrix structure.
While creating this model, the main objective of the clinic was to hold the work task assigned to practitioners together. The model was also created to facilitate the implementation of strategies that are necessary for achieving the mission and goals of the clinic. According to Palta (2006), the matrix structure is one of the most effective models because it enables decentralisation of decision making in an organisation. Swayne et al. (2006) argues that the matrix model increases organisations’ ability to respond effectively.
Palta (2006) argues that matrix organisation structure encourages more interaction, information sharing, communication and collective problem solving in an organisation. The matrix structure involves viewing the entire organisation and what demand are being made of it from within and outside the organisation.
The most effective techniques for sharing information within this model include monthly meeting, campaigns, and telephones. The clinic often initiate monthly meeting to address issues concerning the organisations welfare. Monthly meetings among practitioners and collaborators provide wide representation for key decisions and facilitate communication of the organisation’s direction and strategy implementation.
Techniques such as campaigns and telephones have enabled effective sharing of information between staff members. Members of the staff are able to evaluate how information as constructed provides a set of satisfying task for the workers, whether it is balanced in demands and expectations, and what communication skills are required to ensure effective delivery of healthcare services to patients.
The ineffective techniques for sharing information in the clinic include the use of e-mails and social networks. These techniques are ineffective because they require a high level of literacy. Furthermore, one must have a computer; an internet enabled phone or a laptop to use these methods. Many coworkers in our organisation do not have these gadgets. Therefore, communication through a social network and emails does not provide efficient sharing of information in a healthcare organisation.
In the healthcare environment, all these communication techniques can be applied to promote both vertical and lateral communication. The ineffective techniques such as emails can also be modified to ensure effective communication among computer literate workers and patients.
How technology has affected effective communication in our healthcare organisation
Technology has a considerable impact on healthcare communication process. Information and communication technology has made it easier to keep and restore patient records. Technologies such as videoconferencing ensures regular meeting among practitioners and collaborators at a reduced cost. Information and Communication technology has also led to effective sharing of information and memorable conferencing in our organisation.
There is also improved decision making within the clinic, as workers are able to communicate easily and freely by use of channels such as computers. Besides, technology has enabled practitioners to receive abundant information in one Inbox. Practitioners do not incur travelling cost as they can receive all the required information through emails and fax. Information technology has also led to the emergence of virtual team within our healthcare organisation.
How does your organisation currently share knowledge or involve employees in formulating solutions to problems?
Currently, our clinic staffs share knowledge through channels such as video conferencing and staff meetings. These channels play a vital role in decision-making and problem solving in the clinic. Meeting between the collaborators and practitioners often ensure the implementation of sound policies that address the welfare of patients.
On the other hand, video conferencing often ensure that most appropriate strategies are implemented at a cheaper cost as staff members do not have to travel. Technology, therefore, has played a very pivotal role in enhancing effective communication in our institution.
Conclusively, effective communication affects the quality of patient healthcare (Arredondo, 2000). Therefore, it is essential for every healthcare organisation to implement the organisation structures that can help increase sharing of information and ideas. Healthcare organisations should also implement technologies that improve communication at a low cost.
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Arredondo, L. (2000). Communicating Effectively. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill Prof Med/Tech.
Palta, N. (2006). The Art of Effective Communication. Detroit: Lotus Press.
Swayne, L., Duncan, J., & Ginter, P. (2012). Strategic Management of Health organisations. New York, NY: John Wiley and Sons.