Saturday, 17 December 2011

Leadership and Management

I am a member of the Society of Thoracic Surgeons (STS), one of the 2 large cardiothoracic surgical societies in America. As a relatively small specialty, they certainly punch above their weight with a significantly lobbying presence on Capitol Hill. I suppose in a way some might argue that this represents one of the great problems of healthcare in the United States - the dominance of very expensive hospital based care.
STS produce a quarterly newsletter and here I reproduce a piece from the latest edition on management and leadership. I enjoyed reading it and it got me thinking on the whole issue of leadership that since the days of Darzi has been such a big deal in the NHS. It is proving to be quite difficult to stop oneself from being drawn into applying for one of the extraordinary large number of medical leadership courses that week in week out are advertised in the medical press or more locally by my own trust. I have at the time writing been successful in walking away from such invitations.
The Vision thing is a big thing in leadership.  You could have a thousand individuals with MBAs in the NHS but if they are forced to wear the centrally imposed straightjacket which strangles any hint of vision at birth, then the whole exercise would have been a rather expensive sham.  Central Control freakery will remain a prominent feature of NHS life for a while to come, I suspect. There is alot of talk on leadership in the NHS but precious little of the actual genuine stuff.