Describe a department or unit within a health care organization using systems theory terminology.

Application: Systems Theory

As noted in the Learning Resources, systems theory provides a meaningful and beneficial means of

examining challenges in health care organizations. To do this effectively, however, it is essential to

assess all system components, as some may be relatively healthy while others are problematic.

Describe a department or unit within a health care organization using systems theory terminology.

Include a description of inputs, throughput, output, cycles of events, and negative feedback.

a) Describe the problem you identified within the department or unit using an open­ systems

approach b) state where the problem exists using the systems theory model (input, throughput,

output, cycles of events, or negative feedback).

c)Based on this information, explain how you would address the problem as follows:

Formulate a desired outcome.

d)Identify goals and objectives that would facilitate that outcome.

Translate those goals and objectives into policies and procedures for the department or unit.

e)Describe relevant professional standards.

f) Explain how your proposed resolution to the problem would uphold the organization’s mission and

values and improve the culture and climate.

Required Readings

Marquis, B. L., & Huston, C. J. (2015). Leadership roles and management functions in nursing:

Theory and application (8th ed.). Philadelphia, PA: Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins.

Review Chapter 7, “Strategic and Operational Planning”

See especially Figure 7.1 on page 147.

Chapter 8, “Planned Change”

Organizational Change Associated With Nonlinear Dynamics (pp. 172–176)

Read this section of Chapter 8 on planned change. Consider the role of leaders in effectively

managing planned change.

Chapter 12, “Organizational Structure”

“Organizational Culture” (pp. 274–276)

There are many structures organizations take, and these structures influence how the organization

functions. This chapter discusses many different organizational structures and provides insights into

how these structures influence the change process, as well as leadership and management.

Johnson, J. K., Miller, S. H., & Horowitz, S. D. (2008). Systems­based practice: Improving the safety

and quality of patient care by recognizing and improving the systems in which we work. Retrieved


This article addresses the importance of systems­based practice (SBP) in health care workplaces. The

authors state that SBP knowledge is one of six core competencies that physicians have to know in

order to provide safe and proper care for their patients.

Manley, K., O’Keefe, H., Jackson, C., Pearce, J., & Smith, S. (2014). A shared purpose framework to

deliver person­centred, safe and effective care: Organisational transformation using practice

development methodology. FoNS 2014 International Practice Development Journal 4­(1).

Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.

Meyer, R. M., & O’Brien­Pallas, L. L. (2010). Nursing services delivery theory: An open system

approach. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 66(12), 2828–2838.

Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.

In this article, the authors examine the effects of nursing services delivery theory in large­scale

organizations. Among other benefits, this theory supports multilevel phenomena and cross­level

studies, and it can guide future research and the management of nursing services.

Optional Resources

Glennister, D. (2011, July). Towards a general systems theory of nursing: A literature review. Paper

presented at the 55th Annual Meeting of the International Society for the System Sciences, Hull,

United Kingdom. Retrieved from

Hayajneh, Y. (2007). Management for health care professionals series: Systems & systems theory.

Retrieved from­Theory.pdf