Healthcare Management – Issues due to increased workforce productivity
You may find it useful to review Chapter 4 of the text (Duckett, reading 4.2) ) as preparation for this discussion board.
Duckett argues that improving workforce productivity is the key to addressing future health workforce needs. Duckett also discusses a number of strategies that could be used to bring about improved workforce productivity. (Duckett 2011, pp96).
Reflecting on your past or current work, is there potential for increased workforce productivity?
Using relevant WHO health system building blocks as a prompt, consider any issues that may need to be addressed if workforce productivity was to be increased.
OECD Manual argues that workforce Productivity is defined as the amount of work done or the number of goods produced per unit time by a worker (OECD Manual, 2002). This forms a rough measuring unit in estimating time to deliver a service or a product and hence helps in estimating the relative cost involved. With an increase in productivity, we can safely assume that the worker is efficient and hence will be more reliable, and cost-efficient than others. Duckett also argues that improving workforce productivity is the key to addressing future health workforce needs. Duckett also discusses a number of strategies that could be used to bring about improved workforce productivity. (Duckett, 2011).
Where theoretically, this statement holds true, practically there are some challenges and issues.
Challenges and Issues:
Practically quality of the service/product and productivity play an inversely proportional role. With the rise in productivity, the risk of quality maintenance increases, leading to increased expense and pressure on the quality management system.
Increased productivity, relates to better efficiency of the worker, which means we can provide the same services cheaper. This may lead to increased demand, bringing down the value of the service or the product. This in itself is a huge risk to the sustenance of the service/product in the market.
It is best to have a benchmark for productivity value for any service. It should be decided on the basis of guidelines globally accepted.
DUCKETT, SJ. (2005) Health workforce design for the 21st century, Australian Health Review
OECD MANUAL. (2002) Measuring Productivity; Measurement of Aggregate and Industry-Level Productivity Growth.
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