HealthPartners is a non-profit health care provider with a long history in the health care industry of the United States. HealthPartners is located in Bloomington, Minnesota. The health care organization was established in 1957, and the main focus was on provision the high-quality care for the community members. Thus, the organization’s mission is “to provide high quality, efficient, and affordable care for patients with cognitive problems throughout the course of their disease” (HealthPartners, 2014).
HealthPartners is selected for discussing the changes in the strategic direction because the company has a long history of shifting directions as a result of mergers. In 2013, the company merged with Park Nicollet Health Services of St. Louis Park, Minnesota (HealthPartners, 2014).
It is important to study the steps associated with the merger and focus on shifts in the organization’s direction associated with changes in the number of public targeted and served by HealthPartners and on changes in the number and character of performed tasks (HealthPartners, 2014).
From the point of the academic significance, HealthPartners’s experience in changing the strategic direction can be considered as important to be discussed because of a range of strategies used by the company to address the necessary shifts. Referring to the role of the selection for developing professional skills, it is necessary to state that the merger is a typical cause for changing strategic directions in health care organizations, and this issue should be examined in details.
Although clients did not notice obvious changes in the delivery of the health care in the community during 2013, HealthPartners has undergone a significant shift in the strategic direction after organizing the partnership with Park Nicollet Health Services because of the necessity to combine cultures, to develop new approaches to the coordination of patient care, to propose new strategies to organizing the work of the professionals, and to plan capital investments.
The presented thesis can be changed because of adding more points to the list of observed shifts in the strategic direction. In spite of the fact that a merger is not a single cause to influence the changes in strategic directions, mergers often stimulate shifts in strategies followed by health care organizations because of the changes in policies, environments, provided services, and clients (Swayne, Duncan, & Ginter, 2009, p. 197).
Potential Obstacles and Challenges
Barriers and challenges associated with the research process include the limited access to the corporate information and reports. HealthPartners made the first steps in changing the strategic direction. Therefore, there is no relevant information on the Internet websites regarding the effectiveness of the realized change. Still, it is possible to refer to the available organization’s reports in order to conclude about the success of the implemented changes.
The next challenge is associated with the necessity to analyze possible differences between the definitions of the ‘merger’ and ‘strategic partnership’ in order to provide the theoretical background for the discussion of the changes observed in HealthPartners (Swayne et al., 2009, p. 199).
Much attention should be paid to all the changes in the activities of health care professionals which are the result of the changes in strategies. Furthermore, the information presented on the organization’s website should be added with the information presented in the media in order to receive the complete picture of the shifts and changes observed in HealthPartners.
Swayne, L. E., Duncan, W. J., & Ginter, P. M. (2009). Strategic management of health care organizations. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons.