Healthcare Leadership Challenges

Healthcare Leadership Challenges
















Healthcare Leadership Challenges

The healthcare environment has become increasingly competitive with programs that demand advanced medical performance for financial success. Chief Nurse Executives are resourceful towards the translation of performance demands into operational policies and strategies. However, this position presents new setbacks and prospects for the healthcare sector. Trends towards the consolidation of clinics and hospitals into improved systems are changing the healthcare landscape. The health sector is faced by the challenge to achieve business objectives and promote social responsibility simultaneously.

Social responsibility is essential for all business entities and organizations. However, the health sector is faced by numerous challenges in attempts to promote social welfare and coordinate business objectives. Hospitals and clinics have multiple profitable programs, tests and procedures. However, these procedures have become over utilized by physicians. Well-insured patients become victims of these procedures because they have an added advantage. Uninsured or underinsured patients are disadvantaged because getting basic procedures and tests is difficult. The hospitals are driven by the short-term focus to achieve quarterly profits (Flower, 2012). However, in the long-term, they fail on their social responsibility.

Hospitals that run on a small margin have the perception that they do not possess the incentive to promote proper utilization. Long-term sustainability is overlooked by these institutions. This leads to excessive and inappropriate therapies undertaken by doctors. Patients suffer financially from these long and unnecessary procedures. Doctors are motivated by the benefits accrued from increasing the number of patients. Competition in the industry has also increased as institutions seek to have a comparative advantage (Bausell, 2012). Patient numbers and profits become the motivation for the for-profit hospitals. However, their approach fails to achieve social responsibility.

Pharmaceutical companies increase their marketing budgets and mislead patients in order to exploit profits. Patients are encouraged to use the medication with proven results. However, they are unaware of the marketing strategies involved and become negatively affected. Research and development personnel become the main victims when the medications fail on the patients. Quarterly reports are also manipulated to appear favorable among shareholders. The cycle of manipulation is continuous as the companies focus on profits. The business goals are achieved, but the health condition of the public becomes risky (Gauwitz, 2012).

Pharmaceutical firms market their drugs for off-label functions. This misleads the public and doctors on safety concerns and product effects. This is done through falsification of evidence with respect to the efficacy of the medication. Profit margins rise at the expense of the well-being of society. However, the pharmaceutical companies have more challenges as pressure mounts from the government and insurance firms for cost reduction (Goodman, 2012). Generic drugs are popular among patients leading to increased demand in the market. Government control in prices undermines the business goals such as profitability and sustainability. Investigations and regulations by the government also limit the medical companies from unethical conduct to promote social welfare.

Chief Nurse Executives are resources that provide leadership for health care systems in operational, clinical and patient satisfaction outcomes. The expansion of the roles of Chief Nurse Executives (CNEs) poses numerous challenges and opportunities in medicine. CNEs are responsible for the development of service-oriented care by nurses. The role of nurses is highlighted under this responsibility. Opportunities and responsibilities of nurses to promote the development of the health of patients increase. Nurses can become increasingly involved in the management and improvement of services, in hospitals. Nurses are more likely to establish relationships with their patients leading to better relations and understanding of patients. This promotes the role of CNEs in improving the service-oriented nursing care (McCausland, 2012).

Lack of adequate and experienced nurses in hospitals is a serious setback for Chief Nurse Executives. Patient care services become negatively affected with the shortage of nurses. The supply of registered nurses is influenced by a myriad of factors such as hospital downsizing, low numbers of in-patients, low levels of student nurses and the potential for retirement of aged nurses. CNEs are forced to review the factors influencing the recruitment of nurses. The demand for nurses is driven by dynamics that are economic in nature. Health care systems also limit the number of registered nurses they are willing to employ. The patient-nurse ratio is lowered as the nurses that are available work under high pressure and poor conditions. CNEs are forced to manage services with fewer nurses leading to poor implementation of institutional policies and strategies.

Compliance to new regulations and guidelines in the health system has become difficult for CNEs. These new regulations also implement the use of technology and resources to improve service delivery. However, CNEs are faced with the problem of ensuring that these changes are beneficial towards nursing care. Technology targets to change the scope of nursing with efficient services for patients. However, issues related to the personal relationships established by nurses towards their patients are at risk. The interpersonal relationship between patients and nurses promotes health improvement and detection of underlying complicated conditions. The new regulations may also receive negative reception among nurses leading to hostility. CNEs are challenged with promoting stability despite the outstanding concerns of nurses (Olshansky, 2012).

The increase in cost pressures has undermined the role of CNEs. Hospitals undertake cost-effective programs and initiatives to maximize on profits. This is done at the expense of meeting high demands for quality healthcare. Effective communication between CNEs and employees may become difficult because of poor working conditions and health reforms. Communication promotes the connection between staff and the mission and vision of an organization (Balzer-Riley, 2012). However, poor communication undermines the engagement of employees in organizational goals and lowers operational efficiency.

Mass recruitment of registered nurses is necessary to reduce the workload and promote effective treatment. Provision of information and personal approaches by CNEs will enhance communication in the institutions. This will promote accessibility and accountability among employees. Formulation of long-term economic strategies will reduce costs while maintaining quality. Establishing a culture of cooperation is vital for the development of the health sector. Chief Nurse Executives, Chief Hospital Executives and industry players must collaborate towards health improvement. Operational and strategic alignments will promote transformation and innovation. These key players in the health industry have the ultimate goal of improving the care of patients (Wyatt, 2012).

In conclusion, healthcare reform has converging challenges that evolve continuously. Important issues must be addressed by leaders in healthcare. Chief Nurse Executives should be extensively involved in the reform agenda because of they have become key players in health improvement. Reforms in health are essential towards improving the quality of life among individuals. The achievement of business goals depends on the establishment of a system of transparency and accountability.























Balzer-Riley, J. (2012). Communication in nursing. St. Louis, Mo: Elsevier/Mosby.

Bausell, R. B. (2012). Healthcare evaluation. London: Sage.

Flower, J. (2012). Healthcare beyond reform: Doing it right for half the cost. Boca Raton, FL: Taylor & Francis.

Gauwitz, D. F. (2012). Administering Medications: Pharmacology for Healthcare Professionals. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill.

Goodman, J. (2012). Priceless: Curing the Healthcare Crisis. Oakland, California: Independent Institute.

McCausland, M. (2012). Opportunities and Strategies in Contemporary Health System Executive Leadership. Nursing Administration Quarterly, 36, 4.

Olshansky, E. (2012). Leveraging the Strength of Nursing. Journal of Professional Nursing: Official Journal of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, 28, 1.

Wyatt, D (2012). Nurses’ Responsibility for the Future of Nursing. Aorn Journal, 95, 5, 565-6.


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