’Patient Ping-Pong’: Creating value through resource integration
Övrigt konferensbidrag, 2018

Patients with severe symptoms without established cause are from many perspectives reason for concern. The ever increasing specialization of medicine and the predominant principle to organize the delivery of care through standardized pathways, often cause these patients to seek and attain care from multiple healthcare providers before correct diagnosis is provided. This ‘patient ping-pong’ is, of course, often triggering distress for the patient as well as delaying proper medical treatment and hence the probability of positive treatment outcomes. However, it is plausible to further assume that this mechanism may expedite negative effects at both the organizational level, meaning that it negatively affects the organization (e.g., increasing cost
for care), as well as for the professional healthcare employees (e.g., feeling burdened by the inability to help the patient). In this paper a qualitative multiple case study of a Swedish pilot project, where staff and resources were gather ‘around’ patients with severe diffuse symptoms/cancer suspicion in order to facilitate swift diagnosis, is presented and discussed in order to explore the potential value such organizing may generate. The empirical data suggest that the resource integration studied, in these care ‘shops’, creates value for three separated yet entangled actors. The patients articulate satisfaction with the care and attention provided, the professionals experience an increased job satisfaction and attainment of professional skills,
while the healthcare organizations reap benefits associated with a decreased necessity of activity coordination of distinct care providers. As such, this paper argue that futural organizational design choices must not perceived the value chain as the only value configuration model viable in healthcare – if the sector is successfully going to tackle the challenge of an increased demand for high quality care combined with decreased availability of resources.

Value configuration models



Christian Gadolin

Högskolan i Skövde

Erik Eriksson

Chalmers, Teknikens ekonomi och organisation, Service Management and Logistics

Thomas Andersson

Högskolan i Skövde

Chalmers, Teknikens ekonomi och organisation, Service Management and Logistics

Andreas Hellström

Chalmers, Teknikens ekonomi och organisation, Service Management and Logistics

The 22nd Annual International Research Society for Public Management (IRSPM)
Edinburgh, United Kingdom,


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