Organizational Structure of A Healthcare System Analysis Example Paper
The organizational structure of any organization greatly influences the leadership quality and the institution’s overall success. Organizational structures differ from one organization to another. They indicate responsibility and flow of authority and stipulate every employee’s and their leaders’ roles.
Leaders should not impinge on or overtake other leaders’ roles because the boundaries are set. A written chart serves as a conduct template and informs the decision-making process. Functional organizational structures are rampant among healthcare organizations due to the service demands in the healthcare sector, as discussed in this paper.
The organizational structure of Strong Memorial Hospital follows a functional structure as outlined in the chart below. The organization is divided into various departments depending on the type of services offered. These departments include finance, operations, nursing, medicine, and public health. A medical superintendent heads the departments the hospital’s CEO. Each department is led by a department head responsible for all activities in their various departments.
In nursing, for example, it is divided into in-patient, out-patient and Maternal and Child Health departments. These departments are also subdivided into specific departments that offer various services. Each subdivision has a head and a charge nurse responsible for overseeing each activity in the various departments. The functions of each head are well-defined and stipulated. Management is hierarchical and promotes democracy. The organization has distinct positions with clearly identified leaders and their roles, responsibilities and accountability.
Formal leadership is basically the hospital’s management. The various department heads are responsible for all activities in their departments. The middle-level managers in all sub-departments coordinate all activities. Charge nurses and unit managers are critical linkages between the top-level managers and the other nurses. They facilitate feedback and feedforward, hence very integral in any healthcare organization’s leadership.
Healthcare management ensures the organization aligns with the federal government and other bodies’ regulations (Marquis & Huston, 2017). It also makes resources available and ensures high-quality and safe patient care delivery. With formal leadership, there is greater effectiveness and efficacy in achieving goals.
Politics have infiltrated the healthcare sector in recent years. Informal leadership has become a popular aspect of healthcare organizations’ leadership. Critics of the leadership of healthcare organizations exist. Thus, Informal leadership is a vital aspect of any organization (Marquis & Houston, 2017). Critics keep healthcare management functioning at its best level, enhancing service quality and safety (Marquis & Huston, 2017).
In healthcare, informal leaders assist healthcare providers in providing holistic care and bridging healthcare gaps. They also provide social support systems for the workers, which the patient-centered healthcare organizations’ leadership hardly offers. Informal leadership provides a competitive advantage to the existing formal leadership, hence better care delivery (Boamah, 2019).
Further, as Boamah (2019) observes, informal leaders greatly influence and inform acceptance or rejection of new policies, and thus, attention to the informal leaders is vital in change management. Informal leadership could also be a negative influence, where leaders form coalitions to serve selfish reasons. Informal leadership can be used to mask personal differences, thus sparking enmity and poor service delivery.
Informal leaders may spread false information, thus misleading other employees (Sfantou et al., 2017). These rumors could culminate in medical errors, which are leading causes of patient mortality and morbidity.
The organizational structure, as discussed, determines the coordination of activities. It is good to have well-defined organizational structures for large organizations to run all organizational activities effectively. Formal and informal leadership are crucial in healthcare, as seen above. When done correctly and for the right reasons, informal leadership can improve the quality of healthcare services.
Informal leadership can also negatively affect healthcare where leaders serve personal interests, thus impinging on quality care delivery. Healthcare organizations’ management should thus be sensitive and actively regulate informal leadership to avoid confiscating quality care delivery and patient safety.
Boamah, S. A. (2019). Emergence of informal clinical leadership as a catalyst for improving patient care quality and job satisfaction. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 75(5), 1000-1009. https://doi.org/10.1111/jan.13895
Sfantou, D. F., Laliotis, A., Patelarou, A. E., Sifaki-Pistolla, D., Matalliotakis, M., & Patelarou, E. (2017). Importance of leadership style towards quality-of-care measures in healthcare settings: a systematic review. In Healthcare (Vol. 5, No. 4, p. 73). Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute. https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare5040073
Marquis, B. L., & Huston, C. J. (2017). Leadership roles and management functions in nursing: Theory and application. Philadelphia, PA: Wolters Kluwer.