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Business process management in health care: current challenges and future prospects

Authors Buttigieg S, Dey PK, Gauci D

Received 31 May 2015

Accepted for publication 13 October 2015

Published 7 January 2016 Volume 2016:3 Pages 1—13


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 4

Editor who approved publication: Professor Rubin Pillay

Video abstract presented by Sandra C Buttigieg

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Sandra C Buttigieg,1 Prasanta K Dey,2 Dorothy Gauci1

1Department of Health Services Management, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Malta, Msida, Malta; 2Operations and Information Management Group, Aston Business School, Aston University, Birmingham, UK

Abstract: The emphasis of performance management in health care is shifting from output or outcome-based to a system-based approach. In particular, clinicians and managers are re-focusing their attention on processes so as to achieve better health system performance, as a reaction to the financial crisis. Health care management is increasingly applying systems thinking and business process management (BPM) as philosophies, which have proved to make a difference in organizational performance and competitiveness to the industry at large. This commentary provides answers to five questions that emerged through a reflective exercise and use of secondary data sources and informal interviews. These questions are intended to contribute toward better understanding of the meaning and application of BPM by scholars and practitioners in health care management. The questions are as follows: What is BPM and is it relevant to health care? Has BPM been extensively applied to health care? Why focus on quality in health care delivery? What are the current challenges of health care and can BPM help? What role BPM will play in future to facilitate effective health care management?

Keywords: business process management, performance management, quality of care

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