Week 5: Budgets and Their Impact

Week 5: Budgets and Their Impact

Week 5: Budgets and Their Impact

Like any other profession, nurses and their organizations are keenly interested in job performance. Given the multifaceted roles they play, nurses’ performances are directly related to many factors, including available resources, workloads, technology, and more. Many of these factors are economically driven, so it is important that nurse leaders understand the impact of economic and financial aspects of nursing performance as well as the impact of budgeting on team performance.

This week, you examine how nurse leaders relate indicators of nursing performance to economic/financial and budgetary factors. You also explore how such factors impact budgets and why it is necessary to address budget variances.

Learning Objectives

Students will:

  • Analyze strategies to manage budget variances
  • Recommend budget control strategies for healthcare products and service solutions
  • Apply financial principles to developing budgets and managing resources

Discussion: Why Do Good Budgets Go Bad?

In 1948, Harry Truman became President of the United States of America, winning an election against Thomas Dewey. The result of the election was a major surprise. It was considered such a forgone conclusion that Dewey would win that a Chicago newspaper printed the headline “DEWEY DEFEATS TRUMAN” before the election was over.

The newspaper that printed this headline pursued a plan based on projected data. Once that plan was set into motion, there was no turning back. By the time it became obvious that the election would go differently than anticipated, it was too late to take corrective action.

Organizations put a great deal of effort into their budget plans. Since budgets are based on projected data, sometimes the results go differently than anticipated. The result can be budget variances.

For this Discussion, you consider what causes budget results that are different than planned results, and you explore approaches healthcare organizations use to take corrective action to ensure resources are available to maintain performance.

To Prepare

  • Review the information in this week’s Resources dealing with variance analysis, how it is calculated, and how it can be used in decision making, including the video Variance Analysis.
  • Use the Variance Discussion Case document, provided in the Resources, to calculate budget variances for the case presented.
By Day 3 of Week 5

Post a description of your insight into the budget variances in the scenario. In your opinion, what can be done, in general, to manage budget variances? Propose some best practices and/or strategies for budget control, both in general and as to how it relates to your proposed healthcare product or service solution.

By Day 6 of Week 5

Read a selection of your colleagues’ responses and respond to at least two of your colleagues on two different days by offering supporting ideas you believe they should address, alternative solutions to the issue, or specific financial, budgetary, or other challenges you believe their approach should address.

Note: For this Discussion, you are required to complete your initial post before you will be able to view and respond to your colleagues’ postings. Begin by clicking on the “Post to Discussion Question” link, and then select “Create Thread” to complete your initial post. Remember, once you click on Submit, you cannot delete or edit your own posts, and you cannot post anonymously. Please check your post carefully before clicking on Submit!

At least 3 references 


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