Strategic Planning Process in Healthcare Essay

Disparities in Care at Southern Regional

Health System

Subject Area Health

Document Type : Research Paper

Format APA

Academic Level: Masters

of pages 575 – 850 pages (3 pages)


Apply the first stage of the strategic planning model (shown in Exhibit 3.1) to describe ” where we are now ” for SHRS. Then apply stage two of the model to describe ” where we should be going” for SHRS Strategic Planning Process in Healthcare Essay .

NOTE: This case study must be submitted/attached in proper research paper format Disparities in Care at Southern Regional Heath System


Strategic planning is a process in which organizations effectively develop and implement strategies to address specific issues, facilitate change or enhance improvement. Process involves stages that are described in a strategic planning model. The process begins with an assessment of where an organization is through the analysis of both the internal and external environments (Ebner, 2013). The next step entails the determination if where an organization should go. The last step is determination of how to get there. In this regard, this paper contains an analysis of the case of SHRS, an organization that is part of the Southern Regional Health System, using the strategic planning model. The paper assesses where the organization is now and where it should go.


As mentioned earlier, the first step in the strategic planning process is to determine where an organization is through an analysis of both the internal and external environments. SWOT analysis is one of the most useful methods of assessing the environment. An analysis of the internal environment using the method involves the assessment of an organization’s sources of strengths and weaknesses (Ebner, 2013). In order to achieve this, there is a need for the assessment of human resources, organizational culture, service and product quality leadership, financial performance and position and brand identity, among other internal factors.

In the case of SHRS, the organization already has a good mission statement, which supports providing care for all people without discrimination. The organization has good leadership, as expressed by Tim Hank, who aims to leave a good legacy. Those are among the notable strengths of the organization. One of the organization’s weaknesses is that it has not been providing high quality care services, such as the recommended care for heart failure to patients without discrimination. Second, the organization’s physicians and other employees have developed resistance to changes that could help to improve the quality of care provided to the patients. Also, the organization has a culture in which the staff are satisfied with the status quo Strategic Planning Process in Healthcare Essay . They want their organization to be like the others.

In the analysis of the external environment, the SWOT model focuses on the opportunities and threats. The opportunities include an organization advantages over the competitors (Ebner, 2013). Based on the case study, SHRS has an opportunity to reduce disparities in the quality of care provided to people of different ethnic groups since the manager, Mr. Hank, has become aware of the gap. Second, an assessment of the external environment indicates that SHRS is surrounded by a community comprising of the whites, blacks and Hispanics. Thus, the organization has the opportunity to reach people of different ethnic groups easily. Third, the Hispanics and blacks in the surrounding community have a high probability to be unemployed and to become poor than the whites. As such, SHRS has an opportunity to establish healthcare strategies that are responsive to the disparities. The ability to address the issues may be affected by the threat emanating from lack of enough financial support from the government authorities. Also, there may be a lack of support from the surrounding communities.

One of the approaches to determining where an organization is going is to develop a high-level direction, as described in the strategic planning model. The direction is determined though establishment of strategies to address the issues identified during environmental assessment and reevaluation of values, mission and vision. The leaders involved should also predict the outcomes (Ebner, 2013). At this point, a leader selects the most suitable strategy among several options. After selecting the best strategy, the leader establishes specific objectives and goals to be achieved (Ebner, 2013). The objectives and goals should aim to solve the critical issues identified during the environment assessment process Strategic Planning Process in Healthcare Essay.

In the case of SHRS, is direction is influenced by the steps that Hank will take. Hank has hinted on developing a vision aiming to make the organization unique from others in the Southern Regional Health System. The organization uniqueness will be to focus on eliminating discrimination in the quality of care provided to people of different ethnic groups. The organization can maintain the current mission, which is to provide quality care for all. However, Hank needs to establish values resonating with the mission and vision, which should be included in the organization’s code of ethics. In addition, the employees should be required to adhere to the values. The main goal of the organization should be to eliminate the disparity in the quality of care accessed by the people of different ethnic groups. Among other objectives, the organization should reduce the impact of income and employment disparities on the ability of people from different ethnic groups to access healthcare.


SHRS needs to address the issue of disparity in the quality of care provided to people of different ethnic groups. An assessment of the internal and external environments indicates where the organization is at the moment and the need for change. Where the organization is going will require the leaders in the organization to formulate strategies and establish a direction with regard to the issues being addressed.


Ebner, D. (2013). Formal and Informal Strategic Planning: The Interdependency between

Organization, Performance and Strategic Planning. Innsbruck: Springer Science & Business Media Strategic Planning Process in Healthcare Essay.
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