Application of a Planning Function to a Hospital Facility

This paper discusses the application of planning to the management of a 240-bed urban medical center and a 120-bed local area medical center after the merger. It is worth noting that planning is the most significant function of management in a healthcare environment, which any manager charged with such responsibilities, requires embracing. In this regard, it is essential to note that the significance of planning continues increasing with the increasing size of such healthcare facilities and their complexities. For instance, the level of planning in a 240-bed urban medical merger changes after a merger with a 120-bed local area hospital that has poor patient care safety and low level of funding. In this case, a manager of such a facility requires being an effective planner in order to provide leadership, coordination and supervision. In a healthcare environment, planning, in the view of Walston (2013) is an essential management function that provides direction; decreases uncertainty risks; decreases wasteful and overlapping activities; facilitates decision making; promotes innovative ideas; and establish effective standards for control.

As a result of the merger, the new manager requires embracing planning as an essential tool or function in order to achieve effective management. Planning, in this case will require the new manager to consider a number of things such as policy implementation, financial management, human resource, governance and accountability, and service provision (Agarwal, 2013). In terms policy; for instance, planning will assist the new manager together with the entire leadership to adjust policies and procedures of the urban medical center in order to accommodate operations in the additional 120-bed healthcare facility. Therefore, planning will assist the new manager to effectively manage both the medium and long term priorities for the new the entire hospital. Through planning, the new manager and the entire leadership will have to consider the small hospital and improve its operations under the policy plan of the urban medical center.

Considering that that the smaller hospital facility had financial issues during the time of the merger, financial planning becomes an essential function for the management of the new facility (Agarwal, 2013). The new manager will require embracing planning in order to develop a new budget after the entire hospital. This is essential for helping the manager raise enough capital for funding various operations after the merger in order to deliver quality services to patients or clients. Human resource is, also, a significant issue that the new manager will require considering and planning for. After the merger, the need will arise to recruit more staff in order to cover all the duties required in the facility. For instance, the new facility will require an additional 15 physical therapists in order to cater for the increasing number of patients. Through applying this function, the new manager will be able to decide the mix and number of staff the facility will require after the merger.

It is worth noting that the new manager will be in charge of a larger number of staff after the merger. However, since their performance is essential for the success of the hospital facility, planning will be essential for helping him manage their performance through relevant information (Walston, 2013). This is because better performance will improve patient satisfaction. Through proper planning, the new manager will be able to monitor timeliness, integrity, and performance standards of the staff in the entire hospital. Through planning, the manager will be able to improve patient care safety especially in the smaller hospital. He can achieve this by planning for sterilizing equipment, protective materials and general improvement in the hygienic level of the hospital.

In conclusion, it is worth noting that planning is the most significant function of management in a healthcare environment, which any manager charged with such responsibilities, requires embracing. In a healthcare environment, planning is an essential management function that provides direction; decreases uncertainty risks; decreases wasteful and overlapping activities; facilitates decision making; promotes innovative ideas; and establish effective standards for control.


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