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J Healthc Manag. 2008 Nov-Dec;53(6):375-89; discussion 390-1.

Development of an interprofessional competency model for healthcare leadership.

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Department of Health Management and Policy, School of Public Health, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, USA.


During the past decade, there has been a growing interest in competency-based performance systems for enhancing both individual and organizational performance in health professions education and the varied healthcare industry sectors. In 2003, the Institute of Medicine's report Health Professions Education: A Bridge to Quality called for a core set of competencies across the professions to ultimately improve the quality of healthcare in the United States. This article reviews the processes and outcomes associated with the development of the Health Leadership Competency Model (HLCM), an evidence-based and behaviorally focused approach for evaluating leadership skills across the professions, including health management, medicine, and nursing, and across career stages. The HLCM was developed from extensive academic research and widespread application outside healthcare. Early development included behavioral event interviewing, psychometric analysis, and cross-industry sector benchmarking. Application to healthcare was supported by additional literature review, practice analysis, expert panel inputs, and pilot-testing surveys. The model addresses three overarching domains subsuming 26 behavioral and technical competencies. Each competency is composed of prescriptive behavioral indicators, or levels, for development and assessment as individuals progress through their careers from entry-level to mid-level and advanced stages of lifelong development. The model supports identification of opportunities for leadership improvement in both academic and practice settings.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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