Strategy and Strategic Thinking in Healthcare Organizations – Health System Example

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"Strategy and Strategic Thinking in Healthcare Organizations"  is a worthy example of a paper on the health system. Organizational objectives can be defined as short-term and medium-term goals whose accomplishment is sought by an organization (Wu & Pagell, 2011). In order for an organization to achieve its goals, it must use specific criteria, which must be effective, and less involved (Merson & Mills, 2006). This paper will argue in favor of SMART as the best criteria healthcare organizations should use to monitor the achievement of their objectives. SMART is the best framework for successful strategy implementation since the objectives need to be sufficiently detailed in order to provide clarity in terms of direction for other parties to follow (Atikinson, Crawford, & Ward, 2006).

University Hospitals, Bristol has had its objectives on the provision of clinical services detailed and clear to all health workers. Their goal is to ensure that efficient and affordable services, which commissioners can afford and can be desired by patients and referring clinicians. Secondly, the objectives set must be measurable, which demands that there must be performance accountability, and therefore for any goals set, it must be possible to track the performance to realize full implementation.

This is covered in the University Hospitals’ objective of developing collaborative and consultative research collaborations with the citizens, patients, and careers. The set objectives must be attainable however much demanding and making high demands on the organization’ s capacity they can be. The Hospitals’ objective of providing efficient and effective services is achievable since they carry out teaching and learning programs to ensure that the staff provides safe, efficient and high-quality patient care. The Hospitals’ objective of building trust among all stakeholders can be achieved through the establishment of partnerships and research under the aim of research and development.

The objectives should be relevant since they must focus on the results being pursued as opposed to the processes (Christensen, Grossman, & Hwang, 2009). For the case of the University Hospitals, Bristol, the objectives of providing quality healthcare and developing collaborative and consultative research are relevant they target customer satisfaction. The University Hospitals’ objective of achieving financial surplus that is sustainable to ensure continued funding of education and research objectives is short-lived, i.e.

within the time frame. The SWOT analysis focuses on the strengths and weaknesses of an organization, and opportunities and threats facing it. The NHS -UK faces the threats of an aging population, midwives shortage and lifestyle factors that cause most of the diseases today. This is why the NHS has moved to implement the cardiac/cancer strategy, improve staff satisfaction survey and achieve 24/7 working. The NHS is capitalizing on its major strength of offering quality services by reducing the number of outpatient cancellations and developing the research agenda. An organization can also assess political, economic, social and technological factors (PEST) that may affect the achievement of their objectives.

The NHS considered social factors of lifestyle and aging population as well as technological factors in formulating the 2015/2016 objectives. Implementation of cancer/cardiac strategy and constructing the IT infrastructures in the future by NHS are some of the moves to ensure quality health for everyone. SMART is the best criteria in healthcare organizations should employ in monitoring their goals since its key feature is that the goals must be achievable.

Concisely, organizational goals must be sufficiently detailed, measurable, attainable, relevant and within the time frame. SWOT and PEST have the disadvantage of oversimplification hence one may make oversimplified decisions.


Atikinson, R., Crawford, L., & Ward, S. (2006). Fundamental uncertainties in projects and the scope of project management. International journal of project management, 24(8), 687-698.

Christensen, C. M., Grossman, J. H., & Hwang, J. (2009). The innovator’s prescription. A disruptive Solution for Health Care. New York City: McGraw-Hill Education.

Merson, M. H., & Mills, A. J. (2006). Chapter 2: Management and planning for public health. In: International public health: diseases, programs, systems and policies. Sudbury, MA: Jones & Bartlett Learning.

Wu, Z., & Pagell, M. (2011). Balancing priorities: Decision-making in sustainable supply chain management. Journal of Operations Management, 29(6), 577-590.

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