Organizational Learning in Health Care Organizations
Received: 7 January 2014 / Revised: 11 February 2014 / Accepted: 17 February 2014 / Published: 24 February 2014
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The process of collective education in an organization that has the capacity to impact an organization’s operations, performance and outcomes is called organizational learning. In health care organizations, patient care is provided through one or more visible and invisible teams. These teams are
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The process of collective education in an organization that has the capacity to impact an organization’s operations, performance and outcomes is called organizational learning. In health care organizations, patient care is provided through one or more visible and invisible teams. These teams are composed of experts and novices from diverse backgrounds working together to provide coordinated care. The number of teams involved in providing care and the possibility of breakdowns in communication and coordinated care increases in direct proportion to sophisticated technology and treatment strategies of complex disease processes. Safe patient care is facilitated by individual professional learning; inter-professional team learning and system based organizational learning, which encompass modified context specific learning by multiple teams and team members in a health care organization. Organizational learning in health care systems is central to managing the learning requirements in complex interconnected dynamic systems where all have to know common background knowledge along with shared meta-knowledge of roles and responsibilities to execute their assigned functions, communicate and transfer the flow of pertinent information and collectively provide safe patient care. Organizational learning in health care is not a onetime intervention, but a continuing organizational phenomenon that occurs through formal and informal learning which has reciprocal association with organizational change. As such, organizational changes elicit organizational learning and organizational learning implements new knowledge and practices to create organizational changes.