Conflict Management in Health Care Teams

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Conflict Management in Health Care Teams

By:Nemat Aggarwal(13) Jacky Johnson Kisku(26) Madhusmita Boro(11)

CONTENTS Introduction .................................................................................................................... 3 The Nature of Conflict ............................................................................................... 3 Social Conflict Theory ........................................................................................... 3 Attributes of Conflict ............................................................................................. 3 The origins of conflict ........................................................................................ 3 The forms of conflict ......................................................................................... 4 Conflict management ......................................................................................... 4 The Health Care Workplace........................................................................................... 4 Conflict in Health Care .................................................................................................. 5 Sources of Conflict in Interdisciplinary Teams ......................................................... 5 Building Conflict Management into Health Care ...................................................... 6 The Role of Organisational Culture ........................................................................... 7 Leadership .................................................................................................................. 7 Ambiguity .................................................................................................................. 8 Physicians and Conflict.............................................................................................. 9 Management and Prevention of Unproductive Conflict ................................................ 9 Conclusions .................................................................................................................... 9 References .................................................................................................................... 10

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Introduction
The Nature of Conflict
Social Conflict Theory Conflict has been the subject of study since the time of ancient civilisation, and opinions have always existed as to whether conflict played both a constructive as well as destructive role in society. Formal examination of the role of conflict in society began in the eighteenth century, the earliest era of sociological thought, with the work of Adam Ferguson (1723-1816), while modern concepts of the nature of conflict can be traced to the work of Georg Simmel (1858-1918) at the beginning of the twentieth century. Simmel recognised that conflict was pervasive, embedded in social structure, and potentially unifying. These ideas were further developed by later writers, most notably Coser, who described how conflict contributes to the maintenance of social order. Drawing on functionalist theory, Coser distinguishes between conflict operating in open and rigid social systems. In open systems, provided the issues are not central to group existence, there is sufficient flexibility to allow conflict to contribute to relationships, social norms, and power balance adjustments, while controlling tension. In contrast inflexible systems inhibit expression of conflict and challenge basic values and goals, threatening consensus (Sands et al. 1990). Abramson sought to apply social conflict theory to health care interdisciplinary teams, in particular collective decision making and responsibility, and how team members deal with their individual moral agency with respect to group process. Abramson asked to whom is moral responsibility primarily due in the face of conflicting obligations.

Attributes of Conflict
The origins of conflict Conflict is both...
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