How institutional change and individual researchers helped advance clinical guidelines in American health care

Nigam, A. (2013). How institutional change and individual researchers helped advance clinical guidelines in American health care. Social Science & Medicine, 87, pp. 16-22. doi: 10.1016/j.socscimed.2013.03.006

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Abstract

Clinical guidelines are important tools for managing health care quality. Research on the origins of guidelines primarily focuses on the institutional causes of their emergence and growth. Individual medical researchers, however, have played important roles. This paper develops knowledge of the role of individual medical researchers in advancing guidelines, and of how researchers' efforts were enabled or constrained by broader institutional changes. Drawing on an analytical case study focused on the role of Kerr White, John Wennberg, and Robert Brook, it shows that guidelines were a product of the interplay between institutional change in the medical field and actions by individual researchers, acting as institutional entrepreneurs. Increased government involvement in the health care field triggered the involvement of a range of new actors in health care. These new organizations created a context that allowed individual researchers to advance guidelines by creating job opportunities, providing research funding, and creating opportunities for researchers to engage with the policy process. Individual researchers availed of this context to both advance their ideas, and to draw new actors into the field.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: United States; Case-study methods; Clinical guidelines; Health system change; Institutional entrepreneurship; Institutional change; Embedded agency; Medical profession
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine
Divisions: Cass Business School > Faculty of Management
URI: http://openaccess.city.ac.uk/id/eprint/14005

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