2 Jun 2022


Communication in the Planning Process

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Transfer of information is a key aspect of any organization with the health care setting being any exceptional. Communication in the healthcare is however much developed due to the nature of the setting. For instance, there are groups of people with specialized needs in terms of procedures, associations and the culture of this organization, which is unique compared to other business organizations. According to ( Smidts, Pruyn, & Van Riel, 2014), any highly diverse organization comprises of individuals working in areas such as management, housekeeping, human resource management, management and information systems. The clinical area, on the other hand, includes specialists in areas such as the laboratory, pharmacy and the wards where both the doctors and nurses work. For all the departments to function well, there must be a high level of proficiency with every individual understanding his or her role clearly and playing it effectively. It should be noted that in a healthcare setting, there is no room for errors because a simple mistake can cost the life of a patient. This sector is therefore very sensitive and complex that is why it requires high levels of efficiency in all the departments ( Hart, 2013 ). The efficiency is increased by putting in place faultless communication and coordination strategies. This paper will investigate the role of information transfer in the facilitation of the planning process in a health care setting. 

To enhance the process of strategic program planning, there is need to examine the strengths and weakness in communication as well as the objectives of the organization. The board members are responsible for evaluating and approving the plan. After the approval, the top management then passes the communication to the administration. The managers then looks at the objectives, values, and mission of the organization as stipulated in the plan and passes the information to front-line staff ( Smidts et al., 2014 ). 

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There are various avenues for making the communication. For instance, they can organize a face-to-face meeting or send an email to all the concerned parties. The communication must be made in the most efficient way without any errors because health care organizations are very sensitive and as such, effective communication is a critical component. Communication, therefore, becomes an important component for the promotion of teamwork and collaboration of the strategic plan ( Hart, 2013 ). 

In order to achieve the desired communication dissemination and the achievement of efficient and effective strategic plan, various concepts must be employed including a source, medium, and access. To begin with, the organization should seek to identify the major sources of information affecting the individual users and groups in the organization. After identification of the sources, the team will then come up with means of disseminating the information in the most efficient way. This will ensure there is easy access to the information anytime it is needed ( Smidts et al., 2014 ). 

Secondly, there need to identify a suitable communication medium. Medium refers to the channel through which communication flows. The organization must have the most efficient and fast media in use to ensure emergencies are communicated and acted upon in the shortest time possible. Additionally, it will be important for the organization to ensure there is easy accessibility to information. However, the access should only be given to the persons who are entitled to it. Some information might be sensitive and as such cannot be open to every employee in the organization. For instance, information about patients’ diagnosis cannot be disclosed to every other employee in the hospital. If need be, the communication should be passed in an encrypted form to the intended persons ( Smidts et al., 2014 ). 

The fourth concept necessary for the attainment of an efficient and an effective communication function during planning is ensuring the availability of the important information. The concept of availability requires the organization to create awareness about the availability of information. It will also be important to identify the strategies to be used in the creation of the awareness. Lastly, the health facility should ensure there are no barriers to communication during the time of planning. Hindrances to effective communication will result in system failures. To avoid such misfortunes, there is need to identify the existing challenges and come up with risk mitigation plans. Because the organization cannot afford to make any mistakes, it should identify problems long before they arise and combat them before they cause any damages which may include loss of patient lives ( Nutbeam, 2012 ). 

It is not easy to maintain effective communication in a heath care organization due to a number of reasons. One of the reasons is that a heath care organization is highly unpredictable and complex due to the fact that experts offer their services at different times of the day and as such, dissemination of information is done over different regions. This forms spatial gaps, reducing the opportunities for frequent synchronous interactions ( Hart, 2013). 

The second problem that might hinder a health organization’s strategic plan communication is that existence of remarkable power gaps between doctors and the other professionals in the environment. Consequently, there emerges a culture of limitation in communication which goes a long way to compromise the openness that is necessary for a seamless and an effective communication between these two key stakeholders ( Hart, 2013). 

Lastly, the educational curricula health care professionals undertake mainly focuses on personal technical skills at the expense of communication skills and teamwork. The lack of an emphasis on the importance of efficiency in communication, the health care professionals may have problems facilitating such during important planning processes ( Nutbeam, 2012 ). 

It is clear that there is insufficient intervention-centered research aimed at promoting collaborative communication. On the other hand, healthcare organizations cannot afford to compromise the safety of their patients. This way, there is a need for interventions focusing on the integration of the critical characteristics of teamwork. Such attributes include shared duties for both planning and problem-solving, mutual decision-making, open communication as well as synchronization. Moreover, there is increasing need to increase concepts of communication in the curricula of health care professionals to make it easier for them to practice it when working. For those who are already working and did not get enough training on the concepts of communication, they can be retrained to enhance their competence. Other important training will include crew resource management (CRM) focusing on the fundamental elements of decision-making, management and plan adjustments to improve communication and teamwork. This will promote safety for both the staff and the patients ( Smidts et al., 2014 ). 

In conclusion, communication is a critical part of a health care organization. In spite of the highly complex nature of the healthcare organization, errors cannot be allowed and as such the staff must ensure there are high levels of accuracy in all the operations. A simple mistake may cost the life of a patient and nobody would like this. The only way to eliminate errors is by upholding the highest standards of communication. The top management and the board must ensure the developed strategic plan is duly and effectively communicated to the members of the front-line. This will ensure there is a clear understanding of its contents as well as the vision and mission of the organization ( Hart, 2013). 

It is also the responsibility of the top management to disseminate communication of critical aspects such as the values and objectives of the organization. It would, however, be pointless to have a well-designed strategic plan and then leaving it to be implemented by an ineffective leader. The person entrusted with overseeing the process of facilitation of the strategic plan must be effective and competent enough for the strategic plan to have the intended impact on the organization. An effective leader will assist in decision making and thus improve the way things are done in the organization. This shows that strategic leadership must encompass a vision and a strategy to help the organization in the achievement of its mission in the long run. 


Hart, S. L. (2013). An integrative framework for strategy-making processes. Academy of management review , 17 (2), 327-351. 

Nutbeam, D. (2012). Health literacy as a public health goal: a challenge for contemporary health education and communication strategies into the 21st century. Health promotion international , 15 (3), 259-267. 

Smidts, A., Pruyn, A. T. H., & Van Riel, C. B. (2014). The impact of employee communication and perceived external prestige on organizational identification. Academy of Management journal , 44 (5), 1051-1062. 

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