Learning Healthcare Organizations
Dr. Martha Jennings
There are two healthcare organizations that I will be discussing that have transformational change to promote/create learning organization. One is the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the other one is International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC). CDC is a federal agency under the Department of Health and Human Services that focuses national attention on developing and applying disease control and prevention.
CDC collaborates to create the expertise, information, and tools that people and communities need to protect their health through health promotion, prevention of disease, injury and disability and preparedness for new health treats. Stakeholders at CDC are people invested in the program that are interested in the results of the evaluation, and/or with a stake in what will be done with the results of the evaluation. Representing their needs and interests throughout the process is fundamental to good program evaluation.
Those involved in program operations are the management, program staff, partners, funding agencies and coalition members. Those served or affected by the program are patients or clients, advocacy group, community members, and elected official. And lastly, those who are intended users of the evaluation findings are persons in a position to make decisions about the program, such as partners, funding agencies, coalition members, and the general public or taxpayers.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) continues its long standing dedication to improving the health and wellness of all Americans with the Community Transformation Grant (CTG) program. The CTG program is funded by the Affordable Care Act’s Prevention and Public Health Fund and awarded $103 million to 61 states and local government agencies, tribes, and territories, and nonprofit organizations in 36 states, along with nearly $4 million to 6 national networks of community-based organizations. Focusing on priorities for change for healthier living is improving health and wellness on tobacco-free living, active living and healthy eating, and high impact quality clinical and other preventive services to prevent and control high blood pressure and high cholesterol. Also, focusing on disease prevention and health promotion that includes social and emotional wellness and healthy and safe physical environments, which facilitate the early identification of mental health needs and access to quality services.
Specific community interventions includes; promotes healthy eating by supporting local farmers and developing small grocery stores where people live, protecting people from secondhand smoke exposure, improving community environments to make it safe and easy for people to walk and ride bikes.
The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) is part of the World Health Organization. It coordinates and conducts both epidemiological and laboratory research into the causes of human cancer. IARC main objectives are; to monitor global cancer occurrence, identify the causes of cancer, elucidate the mechanism of carcinogenesis, and develop scientific strategies for cancer control. On February 3, 2014, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) released World Cancer Report 2014, a collaboration of over 250 leading scientist from more than 40 countries, describing multiple aspects of cancer research and control. The report says about half of all cancers could be avoided if current knowledge was adequately implemented. The stakeholders are the scientist’s that has been researching for the cure of different types of cancer; patient’s that are suffering and waiting for the cure, and the leadership of the World Health organization that implements the research. The IARC activities are mainly funded by the regular budget contributions paid by its participating states. The regular budget for the 2014-2015 biennium was approved in May 2013 at a level of 40 424 491 EUR.
Recent changes in the epidemiology of head and neck cancer has new findings. Overall, the incidence of head and neck cancer is increasing in women, whereas it is decreasing in men. Chewing tobacco is a newly recognized risk factor of great public health concern. The role of tobacco smoking and alcohol as the source of cancer has been reinforced. Head and neck cancer among women in developing countries should deserve more attention, as the mortality rates appears to be higher than those of women in developed countries. For never smokers and never drinkers, more research needs to be done to identify their risk factor patterns. While it is true that advances is medical science have led to continued improvements in medical care and health outcomes, the effectiveness of management options remains inadequate for informed medical care and health policy decision making. Frequently, the result is below an optimal level or standard and inefficient care as well as unsustainable cost. In order to maintain quality of care and cost containment, evidence of comparative clinical and cost effectiveness is necessary for healthcare organization. Examples of healthcare organization that I previously discussed have the institutional lessons learned from the process that is learn along the way. As Feinstein said “a strategic plan is not worth the paper it is printed on unless its underlying vision is embedded in the organization’s culture, (Feinstein W.L. The Institutional Change Process). The most essential element of organizational change is the alignment of all relevant stakeholders to the new directions. The following are critical to achieving momentum and the successful implementation of a vision for change such as: updating the executive’s leadership style, increasing staff involvement in achieving organizational plans, helping the board understand the scope of the change, and strengthening the agency-federation relationship. Enthusiasm, persistence, and commitment for change by the leadership are key.
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