Factors that influence Curriculum Development 2

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The setting that I chose to focus on is a hospital/acute care setting. I currently work in a small, rural, community hospital located in the upper Midwest. It is a 125 bed unit that consists of a medical-surgical unit, telemetry, CICU, labor and delivery, OR, orthopedic-surgical unit, and an emergency department. We treat a variety of patients and conditions and strive to maintain a patient-centered care approach. I am a medical-surgical nurse that has been with the organization for approximately 3 years. Internal factors that affect curriculum development are described as factors that are located within the parent institution or setting and the program itself. Some examples of these factors include the mission and purpose of the organization, the philosophy and goals, the internal economic situation and the affect that it has on the curriculum, resources within the institution such as laboratory services and various departmental services, technology, and the structure of each department. External factors that may influence curriculum development result from the environment or arise from factors outside of the organization. Some examples of this may include governmental policies, societal considerations, financial priorities and constraints, and regulatory bodies (Billings & Halstead, 2020).

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            Two external strategies that may affect curriculum development within this rural, community hospital include regulatory bodies and governmental policies. Our hospital is a not-for-profit hospital but many of our patients that enter the hospital are on Medicare or some other government or state funded healthcare program. Medicare and the government greatly influence the healthcare system and curriculum within this system may be affected by what programs are allowed in certain organizations or how a healthcare system educates its’ staff members. Certain medications may not be approved by the government and in the time of a global pandemic, healthcare was greatly affected by the government as well as political parties. The government has a say in how healthcare organizations are run in conjunction with accrediting bodies. Health systems in the United States must be accredited to operate using federal funding. Our regulatory body that accredits our hospital visits yearly to ensure that the highest standards are being upheld. This agency also examines educational programs and curriculum that advances the education of healthcare professionals. Continuing education is necessary for healthcare professionals as well and the respective boards supervise and examine this ongoing learning as well. The various educational opportunities and curriculum that exists within my healthcare organization revolves around continuing education and learning a specialty and these programs are monitored by the accrediting body as well as the board of nursing. Regulation of healthcare systems is essential to define the framework within which a healthcare professional acquires and maintains the competence needed to provide high quality health services (Pruitt et. al., 2017).

Two internal factors that affect curriculum development include technology and the internal economic structure of the organization. Our hospital is in the midst of transitioning from one healthcare technology electronic system to a different system that is more widely used within the larger hospitals located in the major cities in the state. This influences curriculum because training sessions are taking place are a new curriculum had to be developed to tailor to the educational needs of staff members. Therefore, staff must be comfortable accessing information from other organizations that are using the same technologies and systems. Our hospital also recently had a security breech and this put a halt to which patients could be admitted and to new curriculum development. The newer nurses needed to learn about paper charting and there was a learning curve related to the shutdown of technology. This breech occurred by outside hackers presumably when a staff member was doing work from home with a less secure network. The economic structure of an organization greatly affects the systems curriculum because there needs to be a budget for an operation to run successfully. There is a yearly educational budget for employees of the hospital as well as yearly training that occur and are mandatory. Therefore, a budget must be established based upon the previous year’s budget and what changes may be necessary for the curriculum to meet the best standards of practice.

Strategies that can be used to address the external factors are communicating with administration and working closely as a team to prepare for the arrival of the accrediting body as well as uphold the strict regulations of the state and government. Accreditation is usually a voluntary program, and the healthcare system is recognized with a compliance of set standards by a certified evaluator (Alkhenizan & Shaw, 2011). This allows for the team to have time to reevaluate curriculum and certain programs within the hospital, receive feedback and make the necessary adjustments. Some strategies for managing the internal factors may be improving software security and having a set budget for educational and professional development. Our hospital is changing our charting program and have increase IT security though education and training of staff members. Our educational budget has increase for this year as it requires more training of staff members to transition to this new program which will ultimately improve patient outcomes and satisfaction and user satisfaction as well.

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Alkhenizan, A., & Shaw, C. (2011). Impact of accreditation on the quality of healthcare services: a systematic review of the literature. Annals of Saudi medicine, 31(4), 407–416.


Billings, D. M., & Halstead, J. A. (2020). Teaching in nursing: A guide for faculty (6th ed.). St. Louis, MO: Elsevier.


Pruitt, Z., Mhaskar, R., Kane, B. G., Barraco, R. D., DeWaay, D. J., Rosenau, A. M., Bresnan, K. A., & Greenberg, M. R. (2017). Development of a health care systems curriculum. Advances in medical education and practice, 8, 745–753.


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