The Importance of Accountability
Organizations have realized the importance of accountability in their daily operations. Most stakeholders need an assurance that the management of an organization they are allied to is accountable to every action that the entity takes. Accountability among employees of an organization and other stakeholders is crucial because without it, it may be difficult to determine who is liable for a particular problem. The proper functioning of an organization depends on the accountability of its management, employees, and other stakeholders. Every organization, whether it is dealing with healthcare, education, manufacturing and marketing, and so on, needs a very high level of accountability to ensure that its operations run smoothly so that everyone knows their jobs and mistakes and how to learn from such mistakes.
The health care is one of the major industries in the world. Because of this reason, there is a need for accountability from the employees and management of the entire system. The healthcare system is bound by many governing principles which include the ethical and legal codes of conduct, professional competence, and the financial performance of each health institution, the promotion of public health and the ease with which the community members can access the health institution (Millenson, 2000). Accountability in the health care system must be seen in the benefits that a certain institution offers to the members of the community.
In the health care system, professional accountability ranks as an important factor because both the physician and the patient often engage at different levels. In the participation, both parties share the role of decision-making. Thereafter, the physician is accountable to colleagues and other patients (Millenson, 2000). The physician will also be accountable to the body that governs the operations of that health institution.
Accountability in the healthcare system also seeks to regulate the costs of accessing medical care. It is common knowledge that the high cost of services is hinged on the mentality of physicians to give quantity rather than quality services. Therefore, it ensures that healthcare service providers eliminate waste, develop the quality of their services, and improve the ease of access, which are all intended to serve the community better. This can be achieved through coordinating and integrating the care system throughout the institution.
Most healthcare systems have resorted to ranking systems with which they use to distinguish employees who may be performing poorly (Miller, 2006). Ranking helps to eliminate the poor performing healthcare personnel and replacing them with others who are motivated and willing to meet the set standards of an institution. Ranking also identifies the top performers and, often, a system is put in place to reward and motivate. Some healthcare institutions have resorted to guaranteeing accountability of employees by using a behavioral assessment interview guide when conducting interviews of prospective employees (Miller, 2006). This form of interview measures the accountability of prospective employees and ensures that the health institution only hires those who will be accountable for their actions. Certain institutions also match the behavior of employees with the culture of the health industry to determine the extent to which the healthcare providers are accountable. Those who do not uphold the culture of an institution either are encouraged to do so or are let go in extreme cases.
Every organization has a system of checks and balances that ensures that the powers of a single individual or body are limited. This will eventually provide a harmonious relationship with all organs of the organization, therefore, promoting good governance by minimizing corruption and oppression (Kowalski, 2004). A successful checks and balances system consists of detailed titles, the processes, and sub-processes. All these details explain the processes and their implementation. Checks and balances work to ensure that all the employees of the health institution are honest in their financial dealings and the Medicare that they provide. The system creates trust and productivity in the health industry. The checks and balances promote honesty by removing all indications of fraudulence through filtering out all information through various stages (Kowalski, 2004). It also protects the health institution and all its shareholders from fraud by preventing inaccuracy.
As previously evident, accountability is essential because it promises the proper handling of the external factors on an organization. Accountability will also instill relations among the employees of an organization. Accountability ensures that the individuals in an organization take responsibility for their own behavior and thought processes. It also makes certain that everyone respects the autonomy of others, and it facilitates innovations in an organization because the employees become vision driven (Kowalski, 2004).
Blame game is a culture in many institutions where individuals blame each other for mistakes instead of taking corrective measures to prevent the mistake from happening. Organizations are able to avoid the blame game by making everyone accountable, to own up, and to take responsibility for their own actions (Millenson, 2000). Institutions should also train their employees on problem solving skills; they must reward those who improve on certain suggestions or work. Blame game can also be avoided when organizations form observant groups that would cover different perspectives of the functions of the organization. The regular analysis of why things go wrong would also subvert blame games in any institution.
From the analysis, it is obvious that accountability plays a crucial role in the health industry: it makes everyone accountable for his or her actions. Accountability can be enhanced further through constant training and promotion of proper culture in an organization. Accountability promotes a positive culture, which, in turn, eliminates the time and resource wastage.