Accountability is honestly one of the most important aspects to the healthcare industry. It is one of those factors that one would expect to be a necessary part of an organization not only because it is expected but because it is a necessary evil. Employees need to be accountable for their actions in one way or another. An organization cannot function properly without this feature. It has become a new fact of life and affects an organization like no other factor and has cost the healthcare industry billions of dollars and continues to grow on a day by day basis.
According to Porter-O’Grady (2007), accountability is the most overused and misunderstood element of leadership today. Accountability is very important to the healthcare industry because in order for an organization to succeed, it takes employees being responsible for their own actions. If employees do not take control of how they behave or become responsible for their own actions such as knowing and perceiving ones’ own honesty then money may disappear causing the organization to go bankrupt.
If a physician or its staff makes false claims against a patient’s insurance it could put the organization as a whole at risk. The healthcare industry is a billion dollar industry and has a potential of becoming a very huge value to the public. Without accountability employees jobs can be lost and can make many employees suffer as well as causing great harm to those that are playing responsible for their own actions. An employee’s accountability can be measured in many ways. They include performance evaluations, checks and balances, assessment and customer satisfaction.
According to Wilen (1998), measurement tools will be considered in light of the industry’s unique considerations and realities. All participants including insurers, employers, management, healthcare providers and recipients bear responsibilities, which necessitate assessment and analysis. Accountability costs and impacts must be evaluated over time. It can be accomplished when the healthcare industry implements quality and measurement concepts that yield the highest levels of validity and appropriateness.
Accountability requires an understanding of responsibilities, the scrutiny of services, efficiency of services, effective performance, customer satisfaction and outcomes assessment, all of which are part of the accountability continuum. According to www. mcwdn. org/GOVERNMENT/ChecksBalances. html, a checks and balances process for a successful organization is like a separation of powers, which is used by the executive, legislative, and judicial branches of the government which prevents an abuse of power by any single branch that is associated with the system of checks and balances.
It keeps employees honest. It would be like a double check on someone’s books, so as to catch mistakes or theft. While working at Intermountain Healthcare our desk took in the payments and at the end of the day we balanced our tills, showed whether we were short, over, or balanced to the penny and then another individual checked our balance sheet and initialed off on it, so as to double check our work. It definitely makes an honest person out of you.
Accountability affects an organizations working culture by making an organization hole true to the way the business is run. For example if an organization makes its employees responsible for its own actions then the culture proves to show that the organization is run honestly, fruitfully and with integrity. It shows true and with high regard as to how each and every employee is expected to behave. It assists each employee in defining and evaluating performance and progress against specified work ethics.
It encourages self evaluation and self correction in performance related to expectations and its outcomes. According to Wenger (2008), A manager/leader can maintain a positive working culture and avoid a working culture of blame by being creative and understanding of a problem child or a problem employee. The manager or leader can be open to new suggestion, listen to the employee fully, be willing to engage in the discussion and be calm, cool and collective at the time you are discussing the issue with that employee.
It is your job as a manager to get to the root of the problem. Sometimes the problems vanish just because you show your interest in what happened and that you are willing to listen. This will usually put the fires out and control the individuals working culture of blame. In conclusion, accountability is very important to the healthcare industry, because it helps an organization to become successful and it makes an individual honest and full of integrity.
It can be measured in many ways including by checks and balance, evaluation and through customer satisfaction. It can affect the working culture by making an organization hold true to the way a business is run because it makes an individual responsible for its own actions. Accountability also makes a leader/manager better at his/her job because it makes them really listen when a problem arises. It also makes them a better person because they hold true to the mission statement.