Is a good doctor a good manager?
The managing physician is a specialty that has gained strength in recent years due to the need for health institutions to achieve their business objectives, which is why the creation of increasingly complete Management of Health Services.
The administration of a clinic, hospital or health center, like a company in any other field, requires skills and technical knowledge that transcend the medical specialty, because the tasks to be carried out are far from those that a health professional performs on a daily basis. a day.
The blog of the Mining Chamber of Peru, in its article Health management: what is it and how does it work?, highlights some essential management skills in the field:
- Analytical skills: Indispensable to assess all the factors, both internal and external, that influence the organization and to make the best strategic decisions.
- Technical skills: The professional must know how to use specialized computer programs and have ICT skills for information analysis, reporting or budget management. In addition, he must have skills derived from the knowledge of the laws and regulations that govern his field.
- Interpersonal skills: Soft skills are always necessary, even more so in managerial and administrative positions. These allow you to communicate effectively with other individuals, be it your staff, community, or government members.
Although the doctor who leads a health establishment has the great advantage of generating trust, cooperative work and respect among his peers, these qualities are not enough, much less a guarantee of success, when making decisions that involve legal aspects. , financial and managerial that make up an organization.
The article The importance of health administration, from the Institute of Health Sciences of the Universidad Veracruzana (Mexico), summarizes it as follows: “The obligation of the health care manager is that their institutions provide timely services at the lowest cost and of the best possible quality, considering the patient as an individual, as a member of a family and as a member of society”.
More specifically, the following basic capabilities that a health manager or administrator should have could be defined:
- Decision making based on careful analysis of risks and benefits.
- Design and planning that lead to the fulfillment of the objectives established for the organization.
- Monitoring the performance of the implemented strategies and correcting possible failures.
- Order and record of tasks and general responsibilities within the institution.
- Evaluation and feedback that allow the redefinition of strategies and tactics.
- Ability to direct through motivation and leadership, essential characteristics of any professional who aspires to reach managerial positions.
Medical knowledge and experience represent an important authority in the decisions made within a health center. However, desire and common sense are not enough to hold positions that require professional training focused on the administration of health services, especially when the success of an entire institution is at stake. A managing physician would be the ideal profile to fulfill the responsibilities of the Health Services Administration.