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Hospital Operations: Principles of High Efficiency Health Care by William S. Lovejoy, Wallace J. Hopp

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3.5. Conclusions

All the planning, budgeting, designing, data-crunching and systems-building in complex hospitals are ultimately support activities for the all-important personal transactions between patients and care-givers. It is at this personal level that all of the social value of a hospital is realized. The dominant design for these transactions is for in-patients to occupy a bed in a nursing unit, with continual care by nurses and cyclical visits by physicians, specialists, and technicians.

The need for 24/7 nursing care demands a mix of nursing responsibilities that range from the unexacting to the complex and poses key managerial challenges to hospitals. Nurses are both a crucial resource for patient care and the source of 50% or more ...

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