Leadership and Effecting Change in Public Health
Discuss the leadership approach required in the public health sector
Leadership in Public Health
Public Health Leadership Framework
Leadership generally implies to the capacity of a person or a group to lead others. Public health leaders are no different from other leaders in that the roles they play are somehow similar to other leaders. It is most importantly notable that public health leaders work towards the prosperity of the health system. In public health patient care quality is both directly and indirectly affected leadership within the sector. Leaders have a significant impact on the colleagues they work with and the clients they work for. Therefore, public health leadership has to be at the very top level in order to have an effective health system.
Able leadership, management and governance are the pillars of fruitful efforts to raise the quality of the health system to desirable levels. In the public health sector, some of the leadership positions of interest include; a Chief Executive Officer, nurse manager, podiatrist, registrar, consumer advocate et al.
Leadership quality in the public health system is a key factor and sharing or responsibilities within a leadership setting in the health system is a result of effective leadership. Leadership in the health sector whether collective or individual requires certain qualities. As much it is a collective responsibility within the health sector, personality is a great definition of leadership and leaders tend to execute their mandate in a manner consistent with individual personality.
An appropriate leadership style in the health sector is one which has the patient at its core in the definition of high quality health care while collaborating with associates whose main goal is to raise the existing health standards. In as much as there exist health care gaps within the masses, this leadership style must promote inclusivity and seek to narrow the existing gaps. This leadership style should be effective as it focuses to meet current public demands as well as future demands.
The leadership approach required in the public health sector should be able to reflect the personality of the leaders in question as well their cooperation with colleagues within the health sector. The leadership set up should be able to set and achieve its goals, push those within the system to be innovative and most importantly, it should define the health system.
Strategies within the public health system should be set up by leaders within the frame work of the system. Public health leaders should aim at connecting development opportunities with the leadership training received, including leadership to be part of the health education program, promote medical practice and collaboration of development in professional leadership for efficiency. The leadership structure within the public health system is expected to work to come up with an effective patient focused health system that is not only sustainable but also equitable. These set strategies should aim to cover and relate the public health system with several other sectors. The strategies should outline how individuals relate within the public health sector. These individuals may include; patients and medical practitioners as well as other medical staff et al. The strategy should also stipulate how organizations within the public health structure relate with one another. The strategies should also aim to work within the standards set by accrediting and regulatory bodies. How the leadership structure relates with the local, national, federal government should be a part of the strategy of the leadership structure within the public health system.
Generally, the leadership structure of the public health system should be able to do the following effectively; lead the governance structure itself, engage other stakeholders within the public health system, shape the public health system itself and drive innovations while achieving its set outcomes.
While the leadership within the public health structure is expected to lead other professionals, his first mandate should be to lead himself as the idea of leadership as an ideology is always a piece of work in progress. In this attempt to lead, leaders should acknowledge their strong points and short-comings and constantly work to improve themselves as individuals. These leaders are expected to display certain personal attributes such as high levels of integrity, the ability to motivate colleagues, critical thinking and sound personal judgment among other essential skills.
A leader in the public health sector is expected to engage others in the execution of duty. This particular leader should model personal responsiveness and value diversity of the professionals he is engaged with. He should be able to inspire unity within the workforce encouraging cooperation between the public health sector and the member of the public.
The leadership of the public health sector should be able to set and achieve outcomes within a stipulated time span effectively. They should set examples that dictate and expect nothing other than the best from colleagues and given the critical nature of the health sector, they should display high levels of compassion in their leadership execution in order to sustain the system and impact the quality of service within the health care system. It is expected of a leader within the health sector to be influential and display impeccable communication of instruction to colleagues while staying focused and striving to achieve set goals and standards. While in pursuit of achieving a set goal, the leader should continually evaluate progress and recognize achievements in the course of executing his leadership mandate.
A leader within this critical sector in society should always rally for creativity and innovation from colleagues. Always seeking to improve the existing system by making decisions which foster cooperation that result in alliances. These alliances should end up giving the entire health system its desired shape.
Public Health Leadership Assessment Tool
Leadership in the public health system entails delivery of quality service to patients. This can be achieves in many ways including; showing good personal attributes, management and improvement of available services, giving direction while working with others in the health sector , having a strategy and a vision in the management of the health sector. It is important that all staff members are competent in the above mentioned leadership areas in the delivery of service. The Medical Leadership Competency Framework and the Clinical Leadership Competency Framework provide staff with examples and development and learning scenarios across these essential areas in the leadership framework.
In showing personal attributes, leaders in the public health system are required to manage themselves while considering the needs of others. A leader is expected to be aware of the personal values which he holds and has the ability to learn from past experiences. A leader should always strive for personal development through participation and active professional development. A leader is expected to behave in an honest, open and ethical manner. Personally, I exhibit the above qualities most of the time am executing my leadership duties in the health sector. I take time to reflect on my principles while seeking feedback in from colleagues on the same. I maintain a calm demeanor under pressure and execute my duties as planned and not randomly. Most of the time I seek opportunities to continue learning and develop myself while applying what I have gathered in practical work. All my transactions are open and inclusive so as to maintain my integrity.
While working with others, as a leader some of the time I am able to identify opportunities where collaboration with others is guaranteed to improve patient care. I am constantly sharing information across diverse networks for the benefit of both the patient and colleagues. My communication skills in the line of duty are excellent as I also make sure I listen to others’ opinions and views. I regularly encourage my colleagues to contribute their views and management of conflict of interest is a skill that I have learned over the course of my professional experience. In team work, I always seek to involve every member while appreciating and acknowledging members’ contributions. As a leader, I highly respect the decisions of the majority without forcefully imposing my will.
As a leader in the public health sector, I am always striving to improve the health sector. In the line of duty, I am always working to ensure patient safety by regularly taking action when I notice shortfalls and constantly updating my practice ethics to minimize risk. I critically evaluate my delivery of service within the health sector by using feedback from patients and colleagues. In some instances I come up with ideas that seek to improve quality of public health and luckily I enjoy the support of dedicated team that is excellent at the same. I am constantly pushing my colleagues to embrace change for the benefit of the patient.
As a leader tasked with setting direction, most decisions are inclusive with each of the team members’ opinions taken into great consideration. Using the data gathered by the team, I am able to identify areas that need changes and this is effected by applying knowledge and evidence in all arising scenarios. As a team, we collectively engage in developing the vision for the organization under my leadership which in turn influences the wider vision of the health care system. Under my leadership and constant motivation, the team works daily to realize the vision of the department while challenging behaviors that are not in line with the desired vision.
In the delivery of strategy, I am always responsible for the framing of the strategies while taking into consideration members’ opinions. Development and implementation of the strategy is a team effort which is tackled effectively due to the dedicated nature of the team.
Reflection on Personal leadership style based on personal assessment
Based on the personal assessment above, a reflection on my personal leadership would have a clear model while clearly outlining key strengths, priorities, goal, benefits, risks and obstacles and ways of overcoming them.
Some of my notable key strengths as a leader include; I am a good personal manager who always seeks personal development in all opportunities. I am an integral individual with no existing history of corruption. I am excellent at team work and getting others on board to achieve a common professional agenda. As a champion of team work, my staff management skills are a bit average but effective. I am a good planner under the right conditions of resources.
While in the line of duty in the public health sector, I prioritize the patients’ welfare above everything else. This is greatly achieved owing to my innovative nature as a leader. Integrity is a key value that I hold in high regard while working with others. I give leadership directions by setting good examples to colleagues who rely on my guidance in my department with the public health sector. Achievement of goals and strategies within the department is also a key priority to me as a leader.
As a professional in the health sector, I settled in this sector specifically and not any other due to my nature to always help people in need. In this case, medical need. My main goal as a medical practitioner is to provide assistance to patients who need help but have financial challenges that deny them access to medical care.
Some of the risks involved in the medical sector specifically in my line of duty include physical impairments and in some cases, loss of life. Given the critical nature of this line of work, these risks are common occurrence that is sometimes unavoidable but always regrettable. Some of the obstacles a leader will face in the public health sector include frustrations due to unavailability of critical medical supplies, bureaucracy by health insurance companies to service payments for services offered et al.
Bolden, R., Evans, D., Jarvis, C., Mann, R., Patterson, M., & Thompson, E. (2019). Developing systems leadership in public health: A scoping report.
Coscieme, L., Fioramonti, L., Mortensen, L. F., Pickett, K. E., Kubiszewski, I., Lovins, H., … & De Vogli, R. (2020). Women in power: female leadership and public health outcomes during the COVID-19 pandemic. medRxiv.
Czabanowska, K., Myrup, A. C., & Aleksandrova, O. (2018). Women leadership for public health: The added value and needs of women driving public health system reform in Ukraine. South Eastern European Journal of Public Health (SEEJPH).
Gianfredi, V., Balzarini, F., Gola, M., Mangano, S., Carpagnano, L. F., Colucci, M. E., … & Mantovani, L. G. (2019). Leadership in Public Health: opportunities for young generations within scientific associations and the experience of the” Academy of Young Leaders”. Frontiers in Public Health, 7, 378.
Holsinger, J. W., & Carlton, E. L. (2018). Leadership for public health: Theory and practice. Chicago: Health Administration Press.
Ngoc, C. T., Bigirimana, N., Muneene, D., Bataringaya, J. E., Barango, P., Eskandar, H., … & Olu, O. (2018, August). Conclusions of the digital health hub of the Transform Africa Summit (2018): strong government leadership and public-private-partnerships are key prerequisites for sustainable scale up of digital health in Africa. In BMC proceedings (Vol. 12, No. 11, pp. 1-7). BioMed Central.
Popescu, G. H., & Predescu, V. (2016). The role of leadership in public health. American Journal of Medical Research, 3(1), 273.
Ramírez Molina, R. J., del Valle Marcano, M., Ramírez Molina, R. I., Lay Raby, N. D., & Herrera Tapias, B. A. (2019). Relationship Between social intelligence and resonant leadership in public health Institutions.
Rowitz, L. (2017). Essentials of Leadership in Public Health. Jones & Bartlett Learning.
Srivastava, V. K., & Kunwar, R. (2018). Leadership in public health. Indian journal of public health, 62(3), 165.