Google Analystics

Friday, 26 February 2016

Regulatory Compliance is Not an Alternative to a Culture of Caring

This article appeared in today's Toronto Star:

Watchdog raises alarm over restraints used on children in care.

The article is on  a new report by Ontario’s Advocate for Children and Youth into the province’s (troubled) system of residential care with the subline: Confused, incomplete reporting of serious incidents makes it hard to know if guidelines on restraints followed, children’s advocate says.

Many people, both inside and outside regulated care organizations such as those for foster and group homes for youth, for people with mental health challenges and for seniors, confuse regulatory compliance with quality care. There is an assumption by outsiders, including governments, that enforcing regulations with inspections and a big stick will achieve the standard of care needed for vulnerable populations. Such people, and many inside these organizations - management and staff - who should know better, insufficiently grasp the important role of organizational culture for achieving a quality standard of care. Many managers and staff don't know or have forgotten why they're there and so, not being mindful of why they should do what they have to do, they take short cuts for convenience, defeating the purpose of the regulation or quality standard.

On top of it all, they are under-staffed and misunderstood which exacerbates everything.

Yes, we absolutely need adequate inspections for regulatory compliance, and getting further certification and accreditation to standards can also help, but we also need senior organizational leaders with vision who understand what Peter Drucker meant with his now famous quote, "Culture eats strategy for breakfast." If changing the culture is not part of the strategy, the strategy is doomed.

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