Evaluate the problem solving attempt above, and add any suggestions for improvement.

Consultants are usually employed to deal with problems. Special skills are needed to evaluate the conditions, to analyze a problem, and to develop and implement a plan for solving the problem. This week you will focus on use of problem-solving skills in the health care setting.

Consider this scenario:

Franco Valencia, of Healthcare Consultants Inc., was hired as a consultant by Dr. Rita Krakowski, director of Hope Medical Center. The center, which deals mostly with cancer and organ transplants was facing a problem with its medical personnel. Physicians seemed to be calling in sick more often than usual, coming early and leaving late. Time spent around the water cooler and in the break room was increasing while actual time spent in patient care was decreasing. The nursing staff had a turnover rate which far exceeded the national average.

Dr. Krakowski asked Mr. Valencia to help her solve the hospital’s problem of worker productivity.

Mr. Valencia developed a confidential questionnaire which, with the permission of Dr. Krakowski, was placed in the personal mailbox of each doctor and nurse on staff. In the questionnaire he introduced himself as a consultant to the hospital who was interested in making the hospital a more positive place to work in. He asked the personnel to briefly discuss three main concerns, conflicts, or frustrations. He also asked them to note how long they had been having these concerns and what if anything they had tried as individuals, as a group, or as an institution, to deal with these concerns. Personnel were asked to drop off their responses in a locked box in the HR department. They were free to respond anonymously if they wished.

In the meantime, Mr. Valencia asked Dr. Krakowski to trace the development of the problem as she knew it. Specifically, he asked for a time frame for problem, what circumstances may have coincided with the development of the difficulties, what solutions had she already tried. While discussing the matter further, Dr. Krakowski also mentioned that the rapid turnover of personnel and the reluctance of current personnel to become engaged with patient care was seriously impacting the quality of care patients received. Further, the reputation of the hospital was suffering and she was having trouble recruiting new staff.

The questionnaires from the personnel provided a new perspective on the problem. Both physicians and nurses reported that their main source of stress on the job was dealing with issues of mortality. The transplant operations called for a high level of expertise and doctors were often tense and curt when interacting with nurses in the operating rooms. On their part, some of the doctors expressed sadness, a sense of frustration about losing patients, even though they had done their best to save their lives. Both doctors and nurses expressed reluctance and concern about having to carry out “difficult conversations” with the families of patients, conversations related to decisions about using extraordinary measures to prolong life, and when to offer palliative care.

Based on a list of programs that he had to offer, Mr. Valencia chose a program and set a start date. He indicated who would be involved and sought help from Dr. Krakowski to set up a schedule that would fit with the staff’s in-service meeting times.

Using the information in your text, and in the additional resources, write a paper analyzing the problem-solving skills used in this scenario. One way to do this would be:

•Make a list of steps in problem solving, briefly explaining each one.

•Give examples from the scenario to illustrate each step.

•Be sure to note the particular sub-stages of the steps involved

•Note what steps may have been left out.

•Evaluate the problem solving attempt above, and add any suggestions for improvement.

Support your analysis with three additional scholarly web or print resources.

Length: 5-7 pages

Your paper should demonstrate thoughtful consideration of the ideas and concepts that are presented in the course and provide new thoughts and insights relating directly to this topic. Your response should reflect scholarly writing and current APA standards.

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