Date of Conferral

2017

Degree

Doctor of Business Administration (D.B.A.)

School

Business Administration

Advisor

Franz Gottleib

Abstract

Hospital leaders set quality and safety as high priorities in their strategic goals. Improving the quality and safety of patient care requires improving internal processes that have direct implications for patient care. Hospital leaders need to improve health care providers' communication as part of improving quality and safety. The problem addressed in this study was the lack of strategies health care administrators use to guide nurse-physician communication patterns in a university medical center in the Middle East. The purpose of this qualitative case study was to explore communication strategies that health care administrators use to guide nurse-physician communication. Relational coordination informed the conceptual framework of the study. The research question was designed to identify strategies health care administrators use to guide nurse-physician communication patterns. Data were collected and thematically analyzed through semistructured interviews with 5 administrators, 3 nurses, and 3 physicians, and the hospital policy manual. Analysis revealed 4 major themes: nurses' empowerment, nurses and physicians' accountability, multidisciplinary care delivery, and mutual respect. Strategies were identified through the exploration and analysis of the 4 themes. The key findings included that administrators considered holding nurses and physicians accountable for their work to be a key strategy that guides communication, and that effective communication is directly connected to mutual respect among different teams and individuals. The implications for social change include improved patient care and safety, and increased job satisfaction through health care leaders applying the identified strategies to enhance nurse-physician communication.