The Role Of The Ancillary Worker In The Hospital Service

Davies, Arthur Royston (1984). The Role Of The Ancillary Worker In The Hospital Service. MPhil thesis The Open University.



This study is concerned with defining the nature of the hospital ancillary workers' role. It sets out to establish whether or not ancillaries who are involved in a personal service cultural work situation leam to maximise their skills, knowledge, and empathy under the tutelage of such personal service professionals as doctors and nurses.

There is a need to know the extent to which the relationships between personal service professionals and their aides is an important determinant of the ancillaries orientation to their work. We also need to know if this orientation is one that is peculiar to caring work and takes the form of work involvement defined by Halmos in his book, 'The Personal Service Society', Constable 1970, as 'personal service orientation'. Or do ancillaries develop similar work expectations and aspirations to industrial workers in manual type occupations?

It has been argued that the nature of the hospital sub-culture has been largely shaped by the values of the personal service professionals, particularly the medical professional groups. Is there any evidence that the aspirations of ancillaries and other non-professional groups are introducing new elements into the hospital work culture?

This study establishes that too much emphasis has been placed on the influence of personal service professionals as key people who are primarily concerned with enhancing, and maximising the contribution of their aides and ancillaries and not enough attention has been placed upon the collective aspirations of ancillaries, who want to improve their status in hospitals.

It also establishes that hospitals like factories are work situations which can experience pluralistic conflicts between occupational groups and also a sharper form of conflict between employees at all levels with the State and their, agencies the Area Health Authorities.

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