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A sociological ethnographic study of clinical governance implementation in one NHS hospital trust

Staniland, K 2009, 'A sociological ethnographic study of clinical governance implementation in one NHS hospital trust' , Clinical Governance: An International Journal, 14 (4) , pp. 271-280.

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    Abstract

    Purpose – This study aims to give an account of how stakeholders in one NHS Hospital Trust responded to the clinical governance initiative, the effects on quality improvement and the practical accomplishment of legitimacy. Design/methodology/approach – Sociological new institutionalism theory was utilised to explain the political and ceremonial conformity that marked the clinical governance process. A case study was employed using ethnographic methods. The qualitative data were obtained by documentary analysis, observation of meetings and ward activity and 28 semi-structured interviews. A grounded theory approach was adopted in the analysis of the interviews. Findings – Errors and inconsistencies were found in Trust documentation and reporting systems were poor. In practice clinical governance was inadequately understood and the corporate goals not shared. Nevertheless, during the same period the Trust obtained recognition for having appropriate structures and systems in place resulting in external legitimacy. Research limitations/implications – The results only relate to the Trust considered but the study has identified that, although the organization responded to isomorphic governmental pressures in the production of appropriate institutional documentation, the impact of clinical governance to improve the quality in practice was found to be inconsistent. Practical implications – The Trust promoted and endorsed clinical governance success but the lack of organizational processes and knowledge management equally promoted its failure by denying the resources to implement the desired actions. Originality/value – Whilst the study identified that clinical governance had been a “ceremonial success”, it is argued that the practical accomplishment in the improvement of quality of care for patients will remain a paper exercise until organizational and practice issues are addressed. Keywords Clinical governance, Organizational effectiveness, National Health Service, Medical management, Enthography, United Kingdom

    Item Type: Article
    Themes: Subjects / Themes > R Medicine > RT Nursing
    Health and Wellbeing
    Schools: Colleges and Schools > College of Health & Social Care
    Colleges and Schools > College of Health & Social Care > School of Nursing, Midwifery, Social Work & Social Sciences
    Journal or Publication Title: Clinical Governance: An International Journal
    Publisher: Emerald
    Refereed: Yes
    ISSN: 1477-7274
    Depositing User: Institutional Repository
    Date Deposited: 06 May 2011 13:48
    Last Modified: 31 Jul 2014 15:54
    URI: http://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/13976

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