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Title: Critical factors for the creation of learning healthcare organizations. Organizational Learning and Knowledge: Concepts, Methodologies, Tools, and Applications
Epworth Authors: Wickramasinghe, Nilmini
Keywords: Healthcare
Health Information Technology
Healthcare Delivery
Information Systems
Knowledge Management
Data Management
Organisational Learning
Information Technology
Health Knowledge Management
Chair of Health Informatics Management, Epworth HealthCare, Victoria, Australia
Issue Date: 2012
Publisher: IGI Global
Abstract: In his key note address at the 2005 Medical Innovation Summit at the Cleveland Clinic, Newt Gingrich noted that it is imperative to transform healthcare to meet 21st century standards. He emphasized how Hurricane Katrina illustrated most vividly the problems with the current paper-based bureaucratic health system and sent a clear message that an intelligent healthcare system that is value-driven, knowledge-intense, and electronically based is required. The question then becomes how do we go about realizing such a system? To understand this we must first understand the key drivers of demand for health care and for changes in health services delivery. These include, but are not limited to: demographic challenges, i.e., an ageing population that develops more complex health problems; technology challenges, i.e., trying to incorporate the latest technology advances to keep the population healthier; and financial challenges, i.e., trying to curb escalating healthcare delivery costs. In response to these challenges the health system is focusing on enhancing access, quality, and value through the incorporation of technology solutions. However, just simply incorporating technology is insufficient to effect the needed transformation of an intelligent, flexible, and appropriate health system; rather simultaneous and parallel layers of health transformation at the individual and institutional levels must also be considered. In the current management environment, knowledge is recognized as the driver of productivity and economic growth, leading to a new focus on the role of data, information, technology, and continuous improvement in the enhancement of economic performance. A key raw material for all organizations in the knowledge economy is data and this resource can be further refined into information and ultimately knowledge, the source of all sustainable competitive advantage (Davenport & Grover, 2001; Von Lubitz and Wickramasinghe, 2006; Wickramasinghe, 2003, Wickramasinghe, 2005, Wickramasinghe & Lichtenstein, 2005). Generally, organizations have been slow to maximize the potential of this raw asset, while healthcare organizations have been particularly deficient. In the case of healthcare organizations, these data assets are generated during care processes and are used in part to develop new treatment models and more efficient administrative processes among providers, insurers, payers, and patients (Wickramasinghe & Schaffer, 2005). Given the significant volumes of heterogeneous data that are generated during care and the considerable impact that these data can have on treatment outcomes, this current state of incomplete utilization of knowledge assets is unacceptable. Hence a useful starting place for transforming the current healthcare system into an intelligent healthcare system is to transform healthcare organizations into learning healthcare organizations that actively manage and thereby maximize their knowledge resources. Creating such a learning healthcare organization requires the integration of organizational learning techniques and a process centric perspective to knowledge management.
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60960-783-8.ch819
ISBN: 9781609607838
Type: Chapter
Affiliated Organisations: Health Informatics
RMIT University, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Appears in Collections:Health Informatics

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