In her book Managing Health Services, Mary Harris discusses a variety of questions that are related to the management of medical institutions. The author addresses such questions as the improvement of organizational performance, the application of quality control methods and risk management strategies. By providing various examples, the author succeeds in explaining many complex concepts and theories. Additionally, the writer discusses the main factors that affect the policies of governments as well as hospitals. It should be noted that this books does not focus only on theoretical concepts related to healthcare system. On the whole, the issues addressed by Mary Harris are relevant to the concepts examine during the course. Apart from that, Mary Harris includes many case studies that illustrate the challenges faced by administrators who work in healthcare organizations (456). This is one of the main strengths of this work because the case studies explain the practices adopted in healthcare organizations.
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Apart from that, the readers of the book note that Mary Harris pays close attention to the role that health service managers play (Harris 25). For instance, the author speaks about the accountability of these professionals and their interaction with medical workers (Harris 25). Administrators should also understand how different healthcare organizations cooperate with one another. Mary Harris enables readers to get a better idea of these issues. Moreover, the author helps readers understand the peculiarities of teamwork on hospitals or other medical institutions. It seems that this information can give students a better idea about their future profession and the tasks that they will have to do. This is another reason why this book is worth attention of students or professionals.
Furthermore, Mary Harris discusses the ethical issues that heath service managers have to resolve. For instance, these professionals often have to find ways of reducing the cost of healthcare organizations; yet at the same time they have to ensure that the needs of the patients are met. They also have to make sure that none of the medical workers or patients are discriminated. This is why, the author discusses the ways of promoting diversity in the workplace (Harris 77). It seems that these practical tips may be considered by students.
Moreover, Mary Harris examines the ways of measuring the performance of healthcare organizations (350). This issue is also of great importance to hospital administrators because they have to understand whether their initiatives lead to any improvement in terms of quality or cost reduction. The knowledge of these measurement techniques can facilitate the work of many professionals. If they are not applied properly, health service managers will not be able to assess the performance or improve it.
There is another aspect of this book that should be discussed. In particular, Mary Harris provides a set of discussion questions that can be examined by students in the classroom (461). These questions are both challenging and thought-provoking because they prompt to look at the same issues from different perspectives. This is the readers should pay attention to them.
On the whole, this book can of great use to those people who want to understand the functioning of healthcare system. The guidelines that Mary Harris can help health service managers avoid a great number of mistakes.
Harris, Mary. Managing Health Services: Concepts and Practice. Melbourne: Elsevier Australia, 2005. Print.
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