Successful Organizational Innovation in Hospitals: A Case Study of Bedre Flyt from Namsos in Norway
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This thesis goes into the topic of organizational innovation in hospitals. The importance of health care makes it necessary to respond to the challenges faced by hospitals in today?s society. Hence, the aim is set to provide knowledge about how to respond to the current situation, as well as the expected demands for the future. The research explored a recent organizational innovation in a local hospital in Norway, and tried to build an explanation around how this is perceived as a success. It sought to understand first what the premises were, as few similar examples were found in previous research of this topic in health care. Furthermore, it was desired to understand what made this particular case a success, in relation to both what it existed of and how it was brought in to the hospital. The case in display was Bedre Flyt at Namsos Hospital, initiated late in 2009 and now well-known among other Norwegian hospitals. Elements important for this successful organizational innovation were investigated, with interviews of participants as main source of evidence. Background information and data from the health care sector were used as supplementary for the findings. Through further linking this with a theoretical foundation of the topic, conclusions were made and implications were found. Three elements were found to be necessary to improve hospitals? performance in alignment with the demand from society, based on the in-depth knowledge that was gained about the case. The premises are the first element and lies as a foundation for further movements. These include factors like the context in which a hospital interacts, the size of the hospital itself, and its inherent characteristics. Secondly follows the content of the innovation itself as one of the two pillars to reach success. This needs to respond to both financial pressure and pressure for higher quality of care. These two factors are often perceived as creating a dilemma, but can be countered with the right things in place; utilization of advanced medical technology, standardization on multiple levels in the patient pathway, a focus from everyone on the surgery, and an increased amount of teamwork with task sharing among the participants. The third element forms the second pillar, and involves the innovation process from introduction to a successful implementation. It should be led by physicians with the right leadership capabilities and in-depth competence about the activities, as well as involve active participation from everyone being influenced to build ownership in the local context.These elements are closely related and by pursuing them, in the same way as Bedre Flyt, can hospitals improve their performance through organizational innovation. These findings have implications for policy makers in creating the environment for such innovation, as well as for different managers in health care; the current leaders of Bedre Flyt, medical managers seeking similar changes in hospitals, and administrative line of authority at hospitals.