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System characteristics of healthcare organizations conducting successful improvements
Sveriges Kommuner och Landsting.
Linköping University, The Institute of Technology. Linköping University, Department of Management and Engineering, Quality Technology and Management .
MMC, LIME Karolinska institutet, Stockholm.
2007 (English)In: Journal of Health Organisation & Management, ISSN 1477-7266, Vol. 21, no 3, 283-296 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Purpose - In a previous study, based on a survey to all clinical department and primary care center managers in Sweden, it was concluded that the prevailing general improvement strategy is characterized by: drivers for improvement are staff needs, patients and data are not as important, improvements mainly focus on administrative routines and stress management, improvements are mainly reached, by writing guidelines, and conducting meetings, the majority of managers perceive outcomes from this strategy as successful. The purpose of current research in this paper is to investigate whether there is any other improvement strategy at play in Swedish health care. Design/methodology/approach - Data from the study of all Swedish managers were stratified into two populations based on an instrument predicting successful improvement. One population represented organizations with exceptionally high probability of successful imrpovement and remaining organizations represented the general improvement strategy. Findings - The paper finds that organizations with high probability for successful change differed from the comparison population at the p=0.05 level in many of the surveyed characteristics. They put emphasis on patient focus, measuring outcomes, feedback of data, interorganizational collaboration, learning and knowledge, communication/ information, culture, and development of administration and management. Thus these organizations center their attention towards behavioral changes supported by data. Practical implications - Organizations predicted to conduct successful improvement apply comprehensive improvement strategies as suggested in the literature. Such actions are part of the Patient Centered Task Alignment strategy and it is suggested that this concept has managerial implications as well, as it might be useful in further studies on improvement work in health care. Originality/value - This paper provides empirically based findings on a successful improvement strategy that can aid research-informed policy decisions on organizational improvement strategies. © Emerald Group Publishing Limited.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2007. Vol. 21, no 3, 283-296 p.
Keyword [en]
Business improvement, Health services, Organizational change, Sweden
National Category
Engineering and Technology
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-39610DOI: 10.1108/14777260710751744Local ID: 50225OAI: diva2:260459
Available from: 2009-10-10 Created: 2009-10-10 Last updated: 2011-01-11

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