Health Systems Group Created

Updated: Nov 5, 2020

Health Systems Group Created

At Si London Conference on 7th Sept, we held an open space activity on Health Systems Innovation, an open forum where anyone could bring their questions on how systems thinking might apply to health care. We have a lively 1-hour discussion covering a number of topics, here are some questions we held during our conversation…

What is health? What do we mean when we say health and wellbeing? –> it’s culture, it’s economics, it’s fundamentally about enabling people to go above the baseline, to do more. Not just a biological functioning, it’s our experience of, and with life…

Whose responsibility is it? –> individuals play a part too, but society has a central role to play too – in terms of the underlying structures and institutions and how they shape the lives and responses of individuals (we talked about obesity as an example). Increasing decentralization (and focusing only on individual’s actions) could have unintended consequences.

Creating system change in health is challenging –> There is widespread inequality in terms of people’s experiences with health and access to health, and yet the system of healthcare delivery is marked by linearity, trauma, constant change. We heard some examples from the NHS in trying to create a more compassionate culture, and also the Living Lab for Health in Barcelona (would love for more information on both to be shared please?)

How do we define the boundaries of a system (in health)? –> do we need boundaries?

How do we overcome organizational, financial and structural challenges to enable deeper collaboration across the system? –> we discussed funding models as an example, also networking technologies

Where do we focus or start (looking at the iceberg model) –> how can we embrace the challenge of working across all levels of the iceberg, and tap on a range of levers at the same time? How can we increase greater awareness among practitioners working in health to work across the levels?

Allowing more voices in the system to be heard –> Surfacing what’s “beneath the water” (in terms of mental models and norms) with a diverse group of voices in the system could be a powerful way to co-create new ideas and solutions. Keeping mindful of the power dynamics at play in the system of health is crucial.

At the end of the event, participants want to continue the discussion and thus our health systems and this health systems group was born on our site.


Systems Innovation

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