Meeting patient expectations: health care professionals and service re-engineering

Laing, Angus (2002). Meeting patient expectations: health care professionals and service re-engineering. Health Services Management Research, 15(3) pp. 165–172.




A central theme underpinning the reform of healthcare systems in western economies since the 1980s has been the emphasis on reorienting service provision around the patient. Healthcare organizations have been forced to re-appraise the design of the service delivery process, specifically the service encounter, to take account of these changing patient expectations. This reorientation of healthcare services around the patient has fundamental implications for healthcare professionals, specifically challenging the dominance of service professionals in the design and delivery of health services. Utilizing a qualitative methodological framework, this paper explores the responses of healthcare professionals to service redesign initiatives implemented in acute NHS hospitals in Scotland and considers the implications of such professional responses for the development of patient-focused service delivery. Within this, it specifically examines evolving professional perspectives on the place of a service user focus in a publicly funded healthcare system, professional attitudes towards private sector managerial practices, and the dynamics of changing professional behaviour.

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