Breaking Down Professional Boundaries: How can Doctors and Managers Work Together to Better Manage Health Care Organisations?
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This paper explores the relationship between doctor managers and senior health service administrators (CEOs or General Managers) within the context of Australian health reform. Government funding for health services has become increasingly driven by government defined measurable performance targets and resources. These policy changes have implications for hospitals to be managed more cost effectively and efficiently. Hence, one of the challenges of health reform, for those managing hospitals, is a need to have a unified position in their collective ownership of managing the organisation. However, differences in the professional cultures, backgrounds, and training of health service administrators and doctor managers influence how each actor thinks about their roles as managers within the hospital. This paper reports on qualitative data used to explore the role of doctor managers in Australia. One area identified by the research participants was that high levels of hospital CEO turnover contributes to lack of engagement between doctor managers and senior health service administrators, influencing their ability to meet the continual challenges of health reform. This paper highlights the need for future research to expand understanding of doctor manager and health service administrator engagement as they work together toward meeting the demands of health reform.
Employment Relations Record
© 2012 Pacific Employment Relations Association (PERA). The attached file is reproduced here in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher. Please refer to the journal's website for access to the definitive, published version.