Thedrastic change in the state of healthcare in the modern world has asignificant effect on the manner in which hospitals, practitioneroffices, clinics, and other health care facilities are administered.The complexity of the health care systems calls for effectiveadministration of health service administration in order to ensurethat the contemporary health care facilities retain the capacity tocater for the growing population of patients with complicated healthcare challenges (Modesto, 2015). The administration of healthservices combines business, policy, and science enhancing themanagement of fiscal and human resources that are needed to deliverhealth services. In other words, health service administrationfocuses on the management, leadership, and administration of healthcare system. This paper will focus on various aspects of healthservice administration, including finance, policy formation,planning, and skills required for effective health serviceadministration.
Financeis one of the major resources that the health care facilities cannotoperate without. However, organizations may have the financialresource and fail to deliver quality and reliable health care due topoor administration of finance. Appropriate administration of healthcare resources involves budgeting, which including looking forfinances and allocating them in different units to (National HealthService, 2015). The major role of the health service administrator incharge of finance is to balance the income generated by the healthfacility with the expenses incurred in delivering health careservices. Therefore, finance administration is a major function ofhealth service administration that influences the delivery of healthservices in a significant way.
Healthpolicy is an important tool that health care policies use to plan,make decisions, and take actions that can help them achieve specifichealth care goals. The formulation and the implementation of healthcare policy is a function of health service administrators. Healthservice administrators are expected to define the vision for thehealth care organization, outline its priorities, determine roles,and inform employees about their roles (Signal & Durham, 2000).The health policies developed by the health service administratorsserve as rules, guidelines, administration norms, and regulationsthat the management of the health care facilities uses to translatenational policies and laws into services and programs. Supportivepolicies facilitate the scaling up of health care services to ensurethat they meet the needs of clients.
Strategicplanning is a function of health service administration that focuseson alignment of health services with the objective of addressing thechanging patterns in the health care sector. Planning facilitates theeffective use of available resource to maximize the quality andreliability of health care services. There are two factors thatnecessitate the use of strategic planning as a function of healthservice administration. First, planning is inevitable in the healthcare sector given that the cost of health has been increasingexponentially making finance a limited resource that require adequateplanning (Perera, 2012). Secondly, the increase in the population andthe number of people in need of health care facilities hasnecessitated the expiation of health care organizations. The deliveryof health services in large organizations can only be successful inthe presence of suitable strategic plans that take account of thechanges taking place in the society. In essence, strategic planningin the health care helps health administrators in enhancing themodels of service delivery and the introduction of new policyinitiatives.
Skillsrequired for effective health service administration
Healthcare administration is currently being taught in the institutions ofhigher learning. Although most of the health service administratorsare holders of a bachelor’s degree, a master’s degree in healthcare administration is the standard credential. Moreover, a doctoraldegree in health service or health care administration is highlyrecommended for the health care professionals who play special roles,such as teaching, policy development, and research on differenthealth service administration topics (Career Advising and PlanningService, 2013). Apart from academic qualification, health serviceadministrators should seek for knowledge and skills from differentprofessional organizations. This can be accomplished if the healthservice administrators join professional bodies that focus on thedevelopment of career of members. For example, health serviceadministrators in charge of finance administration would be expectedto join the Healthcare Finance Management Association, which is aprofessional body that provides a platform for members to advancetheir financial administration skills.
Healthservice administration is one of the key functions that thestakeholders in the health care sector cannot ignore. It is a broadfield that focuses on ensuring that resources owned by the healthcare facilities are administered properly and in ways that enhancethe quality of health services. Most importantly, health serviceadministrators carry out critical administrative functions thatinclude finance administration, strategic planning, and policyformulation. These functions are vital because they determine thefuture of service delivery as well as the going concern of the healthcare facilities. Moreover, health service administrators are expectedto have adequate skills than can help these professionals carryingdifferent administrative functions. The necessary skills can beattained from the institutions of higher learning and professionalbodies.
CareerAdvising and Planning Service (2013). Careersin health care administration and consulting.Chicago: CAPS.
Modesto,A. (2015). Health service administration. FloridaInternational University.Retrieved April 21, 2015, fromhttp://www.cnhs.fiu.edu/programs/hsa/index.html
NationalHealth Service (2015). Financial management. NHS.Retrieved April 21, 2015 fromhttp://www.nhscareers.nhs.uk/explore-by-career/management/careers-in-management/financial-management/
Perera,P. (2012). Strategic planning in health care organization. RevistaEspanola Cardiology,65 (8), 749-754.
Signal,L. & Durham, G. (2000). Health impact assessment in the NewZealand policy context. SocialPolicy Journal of New Zealand,15, 11-26.