Supply is important for any hospital or healthcare department. Supplies are critical for nurses to perform their duties and ensure patient health and safety. With Covid, these supply lines have been challenged. The importance of inventory is key to good Healthcare Management and keeping a department supplied is critical to success.
The article, “How Hospital Supply Chains Impact Nurses, Patient Safety, and Margins”, from Managed Healthcare Executive Staff looks at some statistics and facts regarding supply needs and how it affects every aspect of care. The article states,
“Nurses face significant supply chain management problems that impact efficiency, patient safety, and hospital margins, according to a recent survey from Syft, a leading national provider of healthcare inventory control and end-to-end supply chain cost management software and services.”
Hospitals and other health care facilities depend heavily on proper direction and management. It goes well beyond just excellent physical care but also leadership and guidance. This guidance comes from the various heads of the departments within the healthcare facility. In the healthcare setting, a hospital can have multiple departments. The lab, the ER, the maternity ward, and critical care are but a small sample of essential departments within a hospital or healthcare facility.
Healthcare Managers are essential to the function of all of these departments. They play a critical role in ensuring that proper procedure and care are administered, as well as dealing with a host of other departmental issues, from personal to supplies and oversight. The demands require not only a training in nursing and healthcare but also human resource skills and management leadership.
Healthcare Managers do not necessarily have to be healthcare professionals, although many hospitals internally hire nurses and other trained staff. Overall, the healthcare manager works in conjuncture with the doctors and nurses in ensuring quality care. They also ensure that the department is financially sound. Healthcare managers also deal with personal, disputes, and discipline of employees within his or her department. (1)
In addition to this, healthcare managers need to exhibit various skills. They need to display leadership and the ability to communicate. They need to be good strategic planners, as well as proficient at planning budgets. Education wise, they can be healthcare professionals, but this is not necessarily required. Many possess degrees in human resources, information technology, marketing, as well as nursing. (ibid)
Many work with consulting firms, rehabilitation centers, hospitals and other healthcare centers, nursing homes and with insurance companies. The standard pay for such services is around 100, 000 a year. Nurses should take special attention for the opportunity to lead a department. With their knowledge of the department and the necessary skills, they can offer their services to their employer. (ibid)
As stated, a career as a Healthcare Manager can be a lucrative and awarding position. Healthcare managers through their hard work increase the success of their department. Through their daily work, they are able to work with supervisors in presenting and giving the best patient care possible, while also helping the department run smoothly. Healthcare Department Managers answer to directors, who then answer to hospital or healthcare executives. Hence, Healthcare Directors play a pivotal role in the hierarchy ladder. (2)
From medical standpoints, they coordinate with healthcare professionals and from a business standpoint, they budget and work with various vendors, but they also provide another service. They also are important in supporting innovation and pursuing the best ways to improve patient care and patient follow up. In this way, they are looking for the best ways to accomplish things. Through technological innovation as well as procedure, healthcare managers can improve patient experience and also improve patient recovery. In this way, healthcare managers also work closely with healthcare case managers.
In working with their staff and team, healthcare case managers need to able to present, summarize and provide staff with information regarding plans. They need to be able to organize and lead meetings pertaining to their department and also report to the directors above them. They need to ensure that the procedures and plans are properly carried out.
So we can see that a Healthcare Manager performs at multiple levels. As sometimes a healthcare provider, they may have nursing experience, or at least a strong knowledge of his or her departments medical procedures. In this regard, they serve a medical function for quality control. They are very much involved with proper execution of procedure and patient care and recovery within the department. From a business aspect, they are responsible for oversight in budgets, as well as contracting with vendors for basic supplies essential to the department. From a leadership position, they help implement plans and innovative ideas and finally from a human resource perspective, they work with employee issues and discipline.
Nurses, again, as earlier mentioned, can be excellent candidates for healthcare managers. Their knowledge of the department and procedure and care are essential prerequisites to the position. Some nurses may wish to enter into leadership positions and seek the opportunity to lead a department. These nurses may also have training in business, or human resource work. Nurses, like this, can be a valuable asset to the healthcare facility and offer their services for leadership.
The American Institute of Health Care Professionals gives nurses the opportunity to advance within the field of Healthcare Management through their unique certification in Healthcare Management. The program is designed to help nurses learn the basics of management within a department. All issues from a leadership, medical, business and human resource perspective are dealt with in the program. This gives the student the ultimate confidence that they will be able to enter the position and effectively lead the department with the knowledge necessary for success.
The program offers essential course topics. The first course deals with organizational behavior which is a key topic in leadership positions. The second course deals with healthcare delivery systems. The third course reviews human resource management. The fourth course looks into the importance of leadership in healthcare management. The fifth course studies finances and budgeting. The final course addresses insurance and reimbursements.
The program itself is completely online. The courses are self paced and the student can proceed at his or her own speed and need. There is only a two year deadline to complete, but most courses, since they are online and self paced, can easily be completed within a month. Each course has an open book exam based on the text book and students have the luxury of unlimited mentor guidance as needed. One can utilize his or her instructor as much or as a little as needed.
Instead of purchasing the entire program at once, students also have the luxury of paying per course as they proceed through the program. After completing all of the required six courses, the student can then apply for certification with the American Institute of Health Care Professionals. The cost for a four year certification is $200. After the four year period, certified members can re-certify but must possess 50 hours of continuing education and 500 hours of work within the field as a healthcare manager.
If you a nurse and would like to move up the organizational ladder, then this certification can be an excellent tool in advancing your career and giving you the optional certification that others do not possess. Please review the Healthcare Management Certification and see if it matches your academic and professional goals and needs.