Continuous Quality Development by Means of New Understanding : A four year study on an Intensive Care Unit during times of hard work and demanding organisational changes

by Lindberg, Eva

Abstract (Summary)
The present thesis follows an intensive care unit during four year of hard work and demanding organisational changes (1998-2001). The changes were mainly initiated by diminishing resources and a legislative claim to pay regard to the quality aspect of health care service. The process of implementing a quality system was the main focus for the thesis. Triangulation was used aiming at explore the process from different views. Two interviews studies were conducted one with the staff and another with the leadership. Both interviews were analysed thematically combined with a phenomenographic technique (e.g. using the how, and what aspect). A longitudinal quasi experimental time-series study was also accomplished. The correlation between staff variables and workload were measured once a year. The result show a 20 % increase in workload per staff and year. The staff judged the organisational climate for innovativeness stable over the period. Sick leave increased, and more so, than the general trend in the society. In spite of this increase the prevalence of stress related symptoms was the same. Two different systems emerged, a complex adaptive system and a mechanical system. The two systems exist and functions intertwined. Because of the construction of the patient register it is possible to see that the situation around a patients being admitted ? 5 days functions according to the complex systems character while the situation around the acute patients functions according to a mechanical system. Sick leave correlated with number of patient admitted ? 5 days (P=,000). It seemed the problem found had its root in the unawareness of the existing of a complex system. The result has implications for a need of increased awareness about how to manage the situation when the ICU is functioning according to the complex adaptive system.
Bibliographical Information:


School:Uppsala universitet

School Location:Sweden

Source Type:Doctoral Dissertation

Keywords:INTERDISCIPLINARY RESEARCH AREAS; Health and medical services in society; Health services research; Intensive Care Unit; Mechanical system; Complex Adaptive System; Diminishing resources; Workload; Sickness absenteeism; Sense of Coherence; Stress related symtoms; Organisational Climate; Longitudinal study; Hälso- och sjukvårdsforskning


Date of Publication:01/01/2003

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