What Is the Organization of a Hospital?

Hospitals are one of the most complex organizations in the world. There are hundreds, if not thousands, of people who make for a hospital’s success and help to keep it running smoothly. They engage in activities such as:

  • Making policy decisions
  • Lead marketing efforts 
  • Oversee budgeting and projects but a few

Here is an overview of what hospitals look like on paper so that you can better understand how they function.

Board of Directors

The board of directors is the governing body for a hospital. The board oversees all aspects of running the organization, including strategic planning and financial management. Board members are typically volunteers who donate their time to serve on this vital committee. They meet regularly in person or by phone to discuss various items in operating a healthcare facility.

The board of directors is composed of people who have the same interests in what’s going on with that organization. They are typically volunteers, so they don’t get paid for their work but do it because they believe in the cause and want to make sure everything runs smoothly. 

Executives to Foresee Day-to-Day Operations

Hospitals have a hierarchical and bureaucratic manner of organization. The top executives, such as the CEO or COO, oversee the day-to-day operations of a hospital. They have an executive team under them that has many different departments   with department heads leading those specific areas. These departments can include admissions, pharmacy services, billing & accounts receivable, risk management, and healthcare IT experts.

In addition to the many different departments that a hospital has to manage day-to-day operations, there is also an executive committee overseeing specific care areas. They include clinical affairs & quality assurance, ethics & compliance research, administration, human resources (HR), legal services, public relations (PR), and marketing.

Hospital Department Administrators

The administrators of hospitals are responsible for the medical and administrative operations. They hire doctors, nurses, technicians, orderlies/custodians, and others, to work at their hospital. The administration is a team that includes various professionals from different departments like finance, networking, human resources (HR), marketing, and public relations (PR), among others. 

Patient Care Managers

The primary role of the patient care manager is to manage the entire process that follows a diagnosis. Their time is spent with patients and families, educating them about their disease and treatment plan, answering questions, coordinating insurance information, assisting in financial decision-making processes such as securing funds for additional treatments or surgery options if needed. Therefore, this person needs to be a strong communicator and team leader.

Patient care managers are not the same as nurses, but they often work in tandem with nurses or physicians to ensure that patients receive adequate healthcare during their stay at the hospital. The patient care managers also need to have excellent time-management skills because they oversee many different cases simultaneously. 

The organization of a hospital is an ongoing process. It can be challenging to balance the needs and desires of patients with those nurses, doctors, administrators, and other staff members who want or need change for their reasons.

A team approach may allow all stakeholders to have input into what works best in one particular situation. That’s the reason for ongoing research. It is the only way to keep up with an ever-changing environment and continually improve to remain competitive as a healthcare provider in today’s market.