Case Study: Health Care Providers and Professionals
Clinician leadership is necessary to ensure that health care delivery is up to the standard of care within a health care organization. Health care providers and professionals seek to model core leadership elements such as integrity, reliability, and communication. The modern health care organization employs knowledgeable workers who are highly qualified professionals, subject-matter experts, and leaders in their specialty area of health services (Al-Sawai, 2013).
The health care workforce includes physicians (MDs and DOs), midlevel providers (physician assistants and nurse practitioners), nursing professionals (registered nurses), and other allied health professionals (e.g., physical therapists, dietitians, etc.). It takes a skilled and competent workforce to deliver quality evidence-based health care for a panel of patients (Hain & Kear, 2015). According to Anand and Bärnighausen (2012), “Putting health workers at the center of the system is essential because all health systems work through health professionals to achieve their goals” (p. 186). However, the health system is only as good as the education, training, integrity, morals, and ethics of its workforce members. Leadership is an essential skill set for professionals to possess as a core element of care continuity and coordination of chronic diseases.
Community Health Systems, Inc. (CHS) was one of the nation’s leading operators of hospitals and affiliated organizations, with operations in 20 states (Ellison, 2018). However, its recent struggles to stay solvent due to fiscal mismanagement, unethical business practices, and overexpansion have led it to close hospitals in some of its rural service areas—areas that are in critical need of health services and care delivery (Smith-Sable, 2018).
Because many of CHS’s hospitals are in rural areas that serve underserved and low-income populations, the hospital closures will leave patients, medical providers, and professionals without access to a health care delivery system (Smith-Sable, 2018). For example, the Twin Rivers Regional Medical Center, part of the CHS network, is a 116-bed hospital located in Kennett, Missouri. CHS announced the closure of the hospital in the summer of 2018, sending shockwaves across the region, because the next closest hospital is more than 100 miles away in St. Louis, Missouri (Ellison, 2018). Closing the hospital will create a gap in medical coverage, leaving hundreds of patients, providers, and patients without access to local health services (Ellison, 2018).
Access to hospital services and primary care delivery is limited in rural areas of the country, such as in the small county of Dunklin in Missouri where Twin Rivers is located (Ellison, 2018). Demand for modern evidence-based medicine and state-of-the-art medical technology from patients with a complexity of chronic health conditions exert pressure on the finances of health care delivery systems (Hain & Kear, 2015). Overcoming these obstacles and barriers proved to be too much for CHS to overcome at Twin Rivers Regional Medical Center. Health care providers in the area have offered a financial bailout to keep the hospital open until community members can vote on a ballot measure in the upcoming county elections (Smith-Sable, 2018). The loss of this critical access hospital would mean a lack of care coordination and disease prevention and raise the potential for adverse health outcomes. The willingness of local health care providers to financially bail out the local hospital has the potential to save both their livelihoods and the lives of patients throughout the county (Smith-Sable, 2018).
Read the case study and answer the questions. Your paper should be in APA style including a cover page and a reference page. You do not need an abstract.
1. Briefly discuss the interrelationship between medical providers and professionals and the patients they serve within the context of an overarching health care delivery systems such as CHS.
2. Describe how the financial bailout offered by the health care providers models their commitment to delivering health care services to their rural community. Give an example of when providers, professionals, and patients have pooled their collective resources to either create or maintain a health care delivery system.
Al-Sawai, A. (2013). Leadership of health care professionals: Where do we stand? Oman Medical Journal, 28, 285–287. http://dx.doi.org/10.5001/omj.2013.79
Anand, S., & Bärnighausen, T. (2012). Health workers at the core of the health system: Framework and research issues. Health Policy, 105(2–3), 185–191.
Ellison, A. (2018, July 10). CHS closes Missouri hospital; physicians put their money on the line to expand services. Becker’s Hospital CFO Report. Retrieved from https://www.beckershospitalreview.com/finance/chs-closes-missouri-hospital-physicians-put-their-money-on-the-line-to-expand-services.html
Hain, D. J., & Kear, T. M. (2015). Using evidence-based practice to move beyond doing things the way we have always done them. Nephrology Nursing Journal, 42(1), 11–21.
Smith-Sable, B. (2018, July 6). After hospital closure, a Missouri community tries to fill the gap in health and jobs. Retrieved from http://kbia.org/post/after-hospital-closure-missouri-community-tries-fill-gap-health-and-jobs#stream/0