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Conflict Engagement in Healthcare

From the Disputing Blog of Karl Bayer, Victoria VanBuren, and Holly Hayes.

Karl Bayer and I taught a three-hour course at the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE) national meeting in Chicago last week. Our topic: Introducing Conflict Resolution Skills in Health Care. We summarized how conflict is viewed in the health care setting, reviewed a cost of conflict calculator, and used case studies from Getting to Yes by Roger Fisher and William Ury, The Power of a Positive No by William Ury, and Beyond Reason: Using Emotions as you Negotiate by Roger Fisher and Daniel Shapiro to teach conflict engagement skills.

The reasons for working together in healthcare include: protecting/improving on-going relationships and improving patient safety, to meet regulatory standards, and for financial reasons – no margin, no mission. A study of nurses’ experiences with disruptive behavior published in the Journal of Nursing Care Quality summarized it well: “Disruptive behavior in healthcare has been identified as a threat to quality of care, nurse retention, and a culture of safety.” Read more here.

The Joint Commission, National Patient Safety Foundation, American Medical Association (AMA) and ACHE have all made statements or developed standards or codes of conduct which support the concept that a collaborative relationship among care givers contributes to the provision of high quality patient care.
As part of a series, in the next few weeks we will publish the real-life example used for our cost of conflict calculator and the healthcare case studies we used in our teaching.


Holly Hayes

Holly Hayes Bovio received a Masters in Health Administration (MHA) from Duke University and her undergraduate degree from Southern Methodist University. She holds a certificate in mediation from Texas State.  Holly brings a strong hospital operations background to healthcare mediations including a focus on clinical quality.  Holly managed her own consulting… MORE >

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