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Health Prog. 1995 Jan-Feb;76(1):41-3, 53.

After the shaking stops. Catholic healthcare workers should prepare for seismic changes.

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Sisters of Mercy, Regional Community of Burlingame, CA.


In an attempt to cap spiraling costs and remain competitive, both providers and insurers are going through a frenzy of consolidation. Experts are predicting these changes: The integrated delivery system (IDS) will be the prevailing type of healthcare organization. There will be fewer acute care beds and fewer hospitals. Hospitals will be subsidiary to IDSs. Catholic and non-Catholic providers will join together to form IDSs. Regional IDSs will join statewide networks. The Catholic healthcare ministry can survive in such an era of consolidation if its leaders (1) collaborate with others on a basis of shared values, (2) have a well-defined mission, (3) provide holistic care, and (4) ensure that the organization remains true to its mission and demonstrates core values in its decisions and behaviors. Sponsors will need to find ways to share management of IDSs with non-Catholic organizations; to collaborate in the formation of regional and statewide IDSs; to urge other Church leaders to support social justice, human dignity, and community service; to be mindful of the stresses these changes will place on physicians and employees; to encourage dialogue about other changes in religious life; and to prepare laypersons to be their successors in the leadership of Catholic healthcare.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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