Different systems in healthcare dictate the quality of services available to their respective clients. One of the common systems in medical practice is the primary healthcare delivery. This system is comprised of primary care institutions, nursing homes, hospitals, and intensive care units. Within the primary healthcare system, different professionals use their managerial competencies and skills in order to ensure quality services are available to the targeted patients. A wide range of policies in healthcare has emerged in order to ensure more people receive quality medical support (Ratnapalan & Uleryk, 2014). In order to ensure this goal is realized, management has become a powerful policy agenda in the primary healthcare setting. This discussion focuses on the issue of leadership within the realm of management and its role in the changing healthcare environment.
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Reasons for Selecting the Issue
The ultimate goal of healthcare delivery is to improve the wellbeing of the targeted patient. The issue of leadership is critical because it can inform healthcare practice and support the managerial practices implemented in a hospital or nursing facility (Manchester, Gray-Miceli, & Metcalf, 2014). Within the recent past, healthcare education has transitioned by embracing the power of leadership. This is the case because physicians and nurses have the potential to influence others, attract like-minded stakeholders, and present various resources that can maximize patients’ health outcomes (Blanchard & Rudin, 2015). Different theories have been presented that can promote the implementation of powerful leadership models in primary healthcare systems.
Every healthcare organization is guided by a unique strategic plan. In order to ensure the plan is adhered to, leadership becomes a powerful strategy that can empower different stakeholders to deliver positive results. Organizations that are associated with poor managerial and leadership practices find it hard to support the changing needs of their clients (Blanchard & Rudin, 2015). The issue of leadership has, therefore, been selected for this exercise because it has the potential to align a hospital’s strategic plan with its objectives. With effective leadership, new elements and practices can emerge and eventually support the changing needs of the patients.
Leadership and Healthcare Management
Healthcare management is a wide field that focuses on the performance and effectiveness of the care delivery models within an institution. The manager’s role is to provide the required support and resources. The manager will go further to monitor the performance of different units, departments, and divisions within the institution (Ratnapalan & Uleryk, 2014). The main duties or functions of management in healthcare include organizing, leading, controlling, and planning. These functions make it easier for different organizations to focus on their missions or visions.
The concept of leadership becomes the driving force in a healthcare organization (Blanchard & Rudin, 2015). A manager who does not have adequate leadership skills will not be able to empower different workers in the facility. Consequently, the targeted employees and practitioners will not be mentored and empowered to deliver exemplary health support to targeted clients (Manchester et al., 2014). That being the case, leadership has become a powerful issue that must be taken seriously by healthcare institutions that want to deliver quality and sustainable services to more patients.
Leadership is, therefore, an important concept for senior management in primary healthcare institutions. This happens to be the case because leadership is the icebreaker that influences the performance of different workers and followers (Boone, 2012). Management usually focuses on the mobilization of resources, identification of goals, and implementation of care delivery models. Many managers in healthcare settings do not take any initiative in order to transform the experience of the client (Manchester et al., 2014). This gap explains why leadership is a powerful concept that can make a difference and improve the nature of healthcare management.
With proper leadership, the nurses, physicians, and caregivers in the healthcare system will be willing to outline their personal goals and work hard to achieve them. Every caregiver and physician can implement the concept of leadership at the personal level (Boone, 2012). That being the case, the practitioner will find it easier to implement the best practices and deliver quality care to the patient. The individual will mainly be focusing on the best experience and wellbeing for the targeted patient (Ratnapalan & Uleryk, 2014). Primary healthcare institutions that embrace the concept of healthcare leadership find it easier to meet the needs of their patients.
How Leadership Impacts Hospitals and Healthcare Delivery
Many professionals in healthcare practice have presented different policies to promote the role of leadership in care delivery. The main objective has been to ensure every healthcare practitioner can attract the right followers to maximize the quality of care available to every patient (Antwi & Kale, 2014). The use of such policies has encouraged different stakeholders to implement specific initiatives that can transform the experiences of more patients. Institutions that embrace the concept of leadership find it easier to promote the best practices and eventually support the health needs of their patients.
The first policy agenda arising from the issue of leadership is the reorganization of care delivery systems. Borrowing from the concept of organization setup, this policy has been focusing on the best strategies that can be used to transform the manner in which care is delivered to different patients. The first issue is to ensure different players within the healthcare institution are guided and mentored in order to develop better care delivery models (Browning, Torain, & Patterson, 2016). The policy has led to new managerial practices whereby different leaders identify new practices that can make significant differences in every healthcare setting. This policy explains why concepts such as teamwork, multidisciplinary councils, and evidence-based practice have been appreciated in many hospitals (Antwi & Kale, 2014). The issue of leadership has always informed this kind of development. The combination of management and leadership is, therefore, a powerful approach that has made it easier for more institutions to streamline their operations. Consequently, the policy has made it possible for more people to receive quality care.
The second policy touches on the issue of education. Within the past three decades, nursing and medical learning institutions have been redesigning their curriculums in order to be on par with the major changes in the primary healthcare system. By so doing, more learners have been informed and educated about the role of management throughout the healthcare delivery process (Al-Sawai, 2013). On top of that, the learners have been sensitized about the importance of leadership. Past studies have indicated that many baccalaureate and doctorate programs in nursing have much emphasis on the issue of leadership (Wong, 2015). When these policy issues are taken seriously, more physicians and caregivers will find it easier to deliver exemplary services to their patients.
Implications on Future Healthcare Practice
The concept of management has been embraced by many healthcare practitioners in the recent past. Leadership has become a unique function of healthcare delivery. The presented policies show clearly that the issue has the potential to impact future healthcare practice positively. To begin with, healthcare practitioners who take the issue of leadership seriously find it easier to establish new teams that can deliver quality patient care (Wong, 2015).
Effective leadership in healthcare has been associated with a number of best practices, such as critical thinking, positive communication, adequate decision-making, and teamwork (Browning et al., 2016). These best practices have been observed to transform the performance of many organizations. The use of effective communication and critical thinking can make it easier for healthcare workers to implement superior care delivery models based on the unique needs of the targeted patients. Teamwork is a powerful practice that is widely associated with effective leadership (Al-Sawai, 2013). Healthcare departments characterized by teamwork focus on the unique needs of the targeted clients and underserved populations.
The issue has also transformed the educational sector in such a way that it addresses the needs of the learners. The ultimate goal has been to equip more learners with adequate leadership concepts. The possession of such skills and concepts will make it easier for more medical practitioners to deliver quality care to different clients. The primary healthcare institution will definitely benefit from this policy agenda (Citaku et al., 2012). When more stakeholders in the healthcare sector embrace the power of appropriate leadership and management, it will be easier to meet the changing health needs of the global population.
Change Process for Senior Management
Senior managers in different primary healthcare institutions should be on the frontline to reexamine the issues arising from the role of leadership. The managers in different healthcare facilities should implement powerful changes in an attempt to make leadership a powerful aspect that informs performance (Sutherland, 2013). In order to achieve this goal, the managers in such organizations should begin by identifying the right culture that aligns with the targeted objectives or goals (Wong, 2015). The senior leaders will implement powerful practices, rituals, and incentivizes that resonate with the concept of leadership.
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The suggested organizational culture can benefit from the use of a powerful change model. One of the best models that can deliver positive results is Kurt Lewin’s theory. The first stage is unfreezing, whereby the best environment is created to attract the intended aspects of leadership. The second stage is called changing (Citaku et al., 2012). During this stage, the managers will implement the best practices such as effective communication, evidence-based practice, lifelong learning, mentorship, collaboration, and teamwork. These practices will define the kind of leadership model embraced in the organization (Sutherland, 2013). During the third stage (refreezing), the healthcare workers in the institution will appreciate the power of leadership in an attempt to support the needs of their respective patients.
The proposed healthcare management policy has the potential to ensure more practitioners in the primary healthcare system improve efficiency. A proper understanding and implementation of effective managerial processes in the healthcare system can transform the experiences of more citizens. This is the case because the model will guide nurses to design better care delivery models, liaise with the patients, and involve different family members (Antwi & Kale, 2014). The level of efficiency will increase significantly and ensure the diverse health needs of underserved populations are met.
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