Merging hospital departments is a complex and time-consuming process as managers need to consider the needs and capabilities of each staff member to be successful. Merging also most often means building a new system and structure of interactions or changing it significantly, which requires careful analysis and a high level of communication. This paper will study the key financial, fiscal, and management issues that a chief nursing officer needs to consider to merge the hospital departments successfully.
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Merging departments requires an efficient division of responsibilities to avoid repetitive processes and additional costs. Social work staff members will be responsible for assessing the psycho-emotional well-being of patients and coordinating and consulting the discharge planning and utilization review departments to meet all patients’ needs. The discharge planning staff will control and provide collaboration of nurses, physicians, and social department workers to offer patients a safe transition from the hospital environment to home and identify the required resources. The utilization review department will coordinate the discharge planning and social work department to propose an optimal treatment and discharge plan with the necessary resources. Thus, the collaboration of all departments will provide quality patient care at a minimum cost.
One of the most important processes in maintaining staff needs is their understanding; thus, the first necessary step is to build high-quality communication. The quality of communication also affects the way and ability to meet needs in conditions of limited resources. According to Hertzberg’s two-factor theory, a person’s motivation depends on hygienic factors and motivators. The first category includes such factors as working conditions, wages, benefits, and the relationship between superiors and subordinates, and motivators are recognition, a sense of achievement, the value of work (Sharma & Goyal, 2017). Communication between a chief nursing officer, managers, and employees will help determine the most important motivation factors for each employee, focus efforts on motivators and reduce dissatisfaction with a low level of hygiene factors if resources are limited. For example, if employees have jobs that are meaningful and enjoyable, and they are supported by managers, it will be easier for them to accept low pay during the merger transition. In this way, the needs of the staff will be taken into account to motivate them to work.
Building communication and teamwork is also a means to ensure that all employees are satisfied with the merger. Open and honest communication will enable managers to identify the dissatisfaction of employees or their groups and resolve or avoid conflicts and resistance to mergers. Team building, collaborative learning, and teamwork will allow both to establish interactions between members of different departments and exchange experiences. In addition, an effective method of increasing satisfaction and commitment is to involve employees in decision-making, especially at the stage of identifying strengths and weaknesses and building a new system of interactions (Dinçer & Yüksel, 2019). This method also ensures that employees are involved in the merger process and are part. This way, employees will feel that their voice is heard and that their initiatives matter for the work of the new team.
Moreover, another method of involving employees in the merger, which also benefits the new team, is to identify employees’ strengths, roles, and responsibilities. Since the social work department is part of the merger, its staff can determine the most appropriate roles for each team member based on their characteristics. This approach, combined with an understanding of the employee’s professional skills, will help identify the most useful and meaningful job for them and eliminate duplicate positions. Thus, all employees will receive responsibilities that will ensure them the most involvement in the work.
Furthermore, a chief nursing officer needs to control the financial and fiscal processes of a merged team. For this purpose, each team member must submit reports different in structure and volume depending on their responsibilities but standardized. Employees of the utilization review department are responsible for controlling costs; therefore, their duties are to train all employees in keeping records and maintaining all reports related to the admission, treatment, and discharge of patients. In addition, an important step is to evaluate the financial performance, or profit and loss statement, before and after the merger so that the chief nursing officer can assess their change and the effectiveness of the new team (Heidari-Robinson et al., 2016). In this way, a chief nursing officer can evaluate the effectiveness of the merge and find flaws that need to be improved.
In conclusion, the basis for a successful merger of departments is clear coordination of roles and communication between all members, which largely depends on a chief nursing officer. A chief nursing officer plays a central role in building trust among employees, which will enable them to engage in open dialogue and take the initiative. In turn, this approach will help involve employees in creating the new system of interactions and provide them with motivation and satisfaction with the merger. At the same time, a chief nursing officer should monitor the new team’s fiscal and financial performance; however, proper coordination of roles will make this process easier. Thus, a chief nursing officer’s main task is to organize work processes in a new team, establish trust and communication between all its members, and motivate employees.
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Sharma, D. K., & Goyal, R.C. (2017). Hospital administration and human resource management. PHI Learning.
Dinçer, H., & Yüksel, S. (2019). Handbook of research on managerial thinking in global business economics. IGI Global.