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Book part
Publication date: 19 October 2012

Jonathan H. Turner and Alexandra Maryanski

Purpose – The purpose of this chapter is to bring data to suggest that group processes have a biological base, lodged in human neurology as it evolved over the last 7…

Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of this chapter is to bring data to suggest that group processes have a biological base, lodged in human neurology as it evolved over the last 7 million years.

Design/methodology/approach – The method for discovering the neurological basis of group processes is labelled evolutionary sociology, and this method revolves around: (1) cladistic analysis of traits of distant ancestors to humans and the great apes, with whom humans share a very high proportion of genes, (2) comparative neurology between the great apes and humans that can inform us about how the brains of humans were rewired from the structures shared by the last common ancestor to humans and apes, and (3) ecological analysis of the habitats and niches that generated selection pressures on the neurology of apes and hominins.

Findings – A key finding is that most of the interpersonal processes that drive group processes are neurologically based and evolved before the brain among hominins was sufficiently large to generate systems of symbols organized in cultural texts remotely near the human measure. There is, then, good reason to study the neurological basis of behavior because neurology explains more about the dynamics of interpersonal behavior than does culture, which was a very late arrival to the hominin line.

Research implications – One implication of these findings is that social scientific analysis of interpersonal processes and group dynamics can no longer assume that groups are solely a constructed process, mediated by culture and social structure. There were powerful selection pressures during the course of hominin evolution to increase hominin sociality and especially group formation, which required considerable rewiring of the basic ape brain. Since groups are not “natural” to apes in general and even to an evolved ape-like humans, it is important to discover how humans ever became group-organizing animals. The answer resides in the dramatic enhancing of emotions in hominins and humans, which shifts attention away from the neocortex to the older subcortical areas of the brain. Once this shift is made, theorizing and research, as well as public views on human sociality, need to be recast as, first, an evolved biological trait and, only second, as a most tenuous and fragile of a big-brained animal using language and culture to construct its social world.

Originality/value – The value of this kind of analysis is to liberate sociology and the social sciences in general from simplistic views that, because humans have language and can use language to construct culture and social structures, the underlying biology and neurology of human action is not relevant to understanding the social world. Indeed, just the opposite is the case: to the extent that social scientists insist upon a social constructionists research agenda, they will fail to conceptualize and perform research on more fundamental forces in the social world, including group dynamics.

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Biosociology and Neurosociology
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-257-8

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Article
Publication date: 14 June 2011

Kinley Roberts, Ian Callanan and Niall Tubridy

This paper aims to determine the reasons why patients miss clinic appointments and to ascertain patients' views on the implementation of reminder systems and penalty fees…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to determine the reasons why patients miss clinic appointments and to ascertain patients' views on the implementation of reminder systems and penalty fees to reduce the rates of did not attend (DNAs). Overall, the paper seeks to establish novel ways to run a more efficient out‐patient department (OPD) service to improve waiting times and access for patients to limited neurology resources.

Design/methodology/approach

A questionnaire‐based study was approved by the audit committee and was offered to 204 out‐patients attending the neurology clinics over a three‐month period (July to September 2009). The patients' demographic details and non‐attendance records were reviewed. The paper aimed to ascertain, from the patients' perspective, why people failed to attend clinic appointments. Each participant was asked their views on how they felt their public hospital service might reduce the number of DNAs at their neurology OPD.

Findings

A total of 204 patients took part. Participants had a mean age of 31 years (range 25‐75 years) with a modal peak in the 26 to 35 age bracket. Almost 10 per cent of those surveyed admitted to missing a hospital out‐patient appointment in the past. The most common reason was that they simply “forgot” (28 per cent). DNA rates by age range were proportionally similar to the overall age profile of attenders. Over 55 per cent said they would like a pre‐appointment reminder via a mobile telephone text message, 19 per cent preferred a pre‐appointment telephone call, and 19 per cent an e‐mail. Of those surveyed, 47 per cent said they would be willing to pay a fee on booking that could be refunded on attending for their appointment. The majority of these felt €20 was the most appropriate amount (39 per cent). The rate of acceptance for various fee amounts was uniform across age ranges. Over half (52 per cent) said that they would agree to a “buddy” system whereby the appointment reminder was sent to the patient but also a nominated friend or relative.

Originality/value

Non‐attendance rates at the neurology clinics in our institution are high with almost 10 per cent of attendees admitting to missing an appointment. One of the main reasons why people did not attend was because they simply “forgot” that they had an appointment and the patients favoured a text messaging reminder system to help reduce non‐attendance. Almost half of the respondents said that they would be willing to pay a refundable booking fee.

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International Journal of Health Care Quality Assurance, vol. 24 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0952-6862

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Article
Publication date: 5 October 2010

Michael Schroeter, Igor Savitsky, Maria A. Rueger, Ludwig Kuntz, Verena Pick and Gereon R. Fink

The purpose of this study is to investigate the implementation of a novel organizational structure in a specialized hospital department. The key issue was to optimize the…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to investigate the implementation of a novel organizational structure in a specialized hospital department. The key issue was to optimize the efficacy of the process “hospital treatment” in a patient‐oriented approach.

Design/methodology/approach

A new organizational concept, i.e. the Cologne Consultant Concept (CCC), was developed by and implemented at the Department of Neurology, Cologne University Hospital in August 2007. The outcome of this reorganization was evaluated via a number of critical performance parameters (effects on daily routines and performance data, feedback from quality control and house officers). Furthermore, the strengths and weaknesses of this novel system were compared to the traditional ward‐based system in Germany, the Anglo‐American consultant model and care provided by sub‐specialized teams.

Findings

The reorganization of the healthcare services by the CCC provided flexible medical care for inpatients. The independent assignment of patients to a ward, and to a team of physicians offered incentives for case‐oriented and efficient medical treatment. Importantly, the time‐consuming admission process could be distributed evenly between physicians in chronological order. Furthermore, beneficial effects on the department's overall performance compared to the traditional ward‐based system were observed.

Originality/value

The CCC constitutes a valuable new organizational structure that can provide medical care in any specialized hospital department.

Details

Leadership in Health Services, vol. 23 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1751-1879

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Article
Publication date: 1 January 1989

V.A. Wood

Clearly defined information is essential for rational decision‐making, planning and control, at all management levels. The current climate in the UK National Health…

Abstract

Clearly defined information is essential for rational decision‐making, planning and control, at all management levels. The current climate in the UK National Health Service dictates that clinicians should be more actively involved in management. However, no relevant and accurate information is routinely available on either the workload or work patterns of individual hospital departments. If clinicians were supplied with this they would then be in a better position to manage their own services. This paper provides a synopsis of the philosophy behind the design of management information systems and presents the results of a pilot study, which was undertaken in a hospital neurology department. The general guidance which emerges is that analysts must always concentrate on ivhat information is needed and the uses to which it will be put. A systems approach to design helps to: (i) define the information required; (ii) establish processes for data capture and analysis; and (iii) establish standards with which actual service performance can be compared (feedback control feature). The pilot study provided information on all stages of development. The systems approach employed could be applied within any clinical department, but doctors must be actively involved. Information derived from running the prototype provided insight into many aspects of work activity, organisation and use of resources within a neurology specialty. A comparison between actual service performance and standards of service as perceived by the consultant neurologists involved, was also undertaken.

Details

Journal of Management in Medicine, vol. 4 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0268-9235

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Book part
Publication date: 19 October 2012

Rengin Firat and Steven Hitlin

Purpose – Due to an absence of dialogue between sociology and the neurosciences, the scientific study of morality largely ignores cultural and structural influences. This…

Abstract

Purpose – Due to an absence of dialogue between sociology and the neurosciences, the scientific study of morality largely ignores cultural and structural influences. This chapter offers a synthetic approach integrating these separate disciplines to aid a more complete understanding of morality.

Design/methodology/approach – This chapter reviews morality's bonding (a sense of groupness and belonging) and bounding (reproducing and reinforcing group boundaries) qualities across disciplines, and proposes three provisional principles to systematize an interdisciplinary model of morality. We then offer a preliminary illustration of how this model might be operationalized with functional MRI data.

Findings – Our proposed principles (as exemplified by our illustrative example) suggest that the sociology-neurology gap in understanding the domain of morality might shrink through an engagement with the underlying neural mechanisms that encompass issues of empathy, racial attitudes, and identity as potential platforms opening up a more “social” neuroscience.

Research limitations/implications – This chapter provides a starting-point for further research incorporating biological mechanisms into sociological theories in the area of morality. The illustrative case study should be replicated in a larger sample and/or in additional studies with different social groups.

Practical implications – This chapter is a useful source of information for sociologists seeking to find out more about the intersection of neuroscience and sociology as well as the neural dynamics of morality.

Originality/value – This chapter presents an introduction to an integrative approach recognizing our biological capacities for a socially constructed morality and the interaction between society and the mind. It includes one of the first sociologically oriented fMRI studies, offering avenues for new ways to bridge research disciplines.

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Biosociology and Neurosociology
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-257-8

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Article
Publication date: 1 March 1974

F.W. LANCASTER

Mailed questionnaires were used to study the use of two printed current awareness devices in specialized areas of the neurosciences, one manually prepared and the other a…

Abstract

Mailed questionnaires were used to study the use of two printed current awareness devices in specialized areas of the neurosciences, one manually prepared and the other a product of MEDLARS. The study determined who uses each publication, how much, for what purpose, and with what degree of success. A major purpose was to discover how valuable the publications are to users and what impact they have had on their own research or professional practice as well as on their information seeking behaviour. Comparisons are made between the results for the two publications. Some conclusions are drawn on information seeking behaviour in the neuroscience community and on requirements for effective current awareness services in this field.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 30 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

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Article
Publication date: 9 July 2018

Johis Ortega, Juan M. Gonzalez, Lila de Tantillo and Karina Gattamorta

A major component of hospital stroke care involves prompt identification of stroke in admitted patients. Delays in recognizing stroke symptoms and initiating treatment for…

Abstract

Purpose

A major component of hospital stroke care involves prompt identification of stroke in admitted patients. Delays in recognizing stroke symptoms and initiating treatment for in-hospital stroke can adversely impact patient outcomes. This quality improvement intervention used simulation together with a traditional lecture to instruct nurses at a university hospital about a new stroke protocol being implemented to increase rapid recognition of stroke and meet Joint Commission National Hospital Inpatient Quality Measures. The paper aims to discuss these issues.

Design/methodology/approach

In total, 86 registered nurses from the neurology and cardiology units attended a lecture and participated in a simulation scenario with a standardized patient exhibiting stroke symptoms. Participants completed a ten-item pre-test to measure their knowledge of stroke care prior to the lecture; they repeated the test pre-simulation and once again post-simulation to evaluate changes in knowledge.

Findings

Overall mean stroke knowledge scores increased significantly from pre-lecture to pre-simulation, and from pre-simulation to post-simulation. Simulation plus lecture was more effective than lecture alone in increasing knowledge about hospital stroke protocol despite assigned unit (cardiology or neurology), years of experience, or previous exposure to simulation.

Research limitations/implications

All eligible nurses who agreed to participate received training, making it impossible to compare improvements in knowledge to those who did not receive the training.

Originality/value

A diverse array of nursing professionals and their patients may benefit from simulation training. This quality improvement intervention provides a feasible model for establishing new care protocols in a hospital setting.

Details

International Journal of Health Care Quality Assurance, vol. 31 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0952-6862

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Article
Publication date: 25 June 2018

Maarten J. Verkerk, Joost van Hoof, Sil Aarts, Sylvia J.M.M. de Koning and Johanna J. van der Plaats

Older people with dementia (OPD) have specific housing and technology-related needs, for which various design principles exist. A model for designing environments and its…

Abstract

Purpose

Older people with dementia (OPD) have specific housing and technology-related needs, for which various design principles exist. A model for designing environments and its constituting items for people with dementia that has a firm foundation in neurology may help guide designers in making design choices. The paper aims to discuss these issues.

Design/methodology/approach

A general design model is presented consisting of three principles for OPD, namely designing for ageing people; designing for a favourable state and designing for beautiful moments. The neurosciences as a whole give shape to an eminent framework explaining the behaviour of OPD. One of the objectives of this paper is to translate the design principles into design specifications and to show that these specifications can be translated in a design.

Findings

Philosophical concepts are introduced which are required to understand design for OPD. Four case studies from Dutch nursing homes are presented that show how the theory of modal aspects of the philosopher Dooyeweerd can be used to map design specifications in a systematic way.

Research limitations/implications

These examples of design solutions illustrate the applicability of the model developed in this article. It emphasises the importance of the environment for supporting the daily life of OPD.

Originality/value

There is a need for a design model for OPD. The environment and technology should initiate positive behaviours and meaningful experiences. In this paper, a general model for the designing of environments for OPD was developed that has a firm foundation in neurology and behavioural sciences. This model consists of six distinct steps and each step can be investigated empirically. In other words, this model may lay the foundation for an evidence-based design.

Details

Journal of Enabling Technologies, vol. 12 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2398-6263

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Article
Publication date: 8 August 2016

Liaquat Lal

This paper aims to explore the impact on workplace performance and employee development of economic, technological, demographic and socio-political drivers, the…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore the impact on workplace performance and employee development of economic, technological, demographic and socio-political drivers, the consequential shift in job role design from an algorithmic to a heuristic model, and the importance of adopting management approaches that enhance intrinsic motivation, creativity and innovation.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper reviews findings from research into intrinsic motivation, Neuroleadership (including circumstances that trigger neurological responses in the limbic system in response to the threat of social pain) and the work of the psychologist, Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, to explore possible approaches to performance leadership that reflect insights from neurology into the actions and reactions of the human brain.

Findings

The article proposes a classification of employees that reflects their location on two axes: the development challenge faced and pressure experienced in doing so. In the case of three (out of a total of four) classifications where performance may prove to be either unsatisfactory or unsustainable, management strategies, styles and approaches to improve individual and organisational performance and employee engagement are suggested.

Originality/value

As the nature of both work and the workforce evolve, management approaches that focus on inspiring rather than controlling performance will be of greater organisational benefit. By acknowledging these paradigm shifts and drawing on recently learning about human brain function, revised approaches to people management and performance leadership can help organisations to optimise performance and build and maintain workplace environments in which creativity and innovation are more likely to flourish.

Details

Strategic HR Review, vol. 15 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1475-4398

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Article
Publication date: 15 April 2019

Antonio Giulio de Belvis, Franziska Michaela Lohmeyer, Andrea Barbara, Gabriele Giubbini, Carmen Angioletti, Giovanni Frisullo, Walter Ricciardi and Maria Lucia Specchia

A clinical pathway for patients with acute ischemic stroke was implemented in 2014 by one Italian teaching hospital multidisciplinary team. The purpose of this paper is to…

Abstract

Purpose

A clinical pathway for patients with acute ischemic stroke was implemented in 2014 by one Italian teaching hospital multidisciplinary team. The purpose of this paper is to determine whether this clinical pathway had a positive effect on patient management by comparing performance data.

Design/methodology/approach

Volume, process and outcome indicators were analyzed in a pre-post retrospective observational study. Patients’ (admitted in 2013 and 2015) medical records with International Classification of Diseases, ICD-9 code 433.x (precerebral artery occlusion and stenosis), 434.x (cerebral artery occlusion) and 435.x (transient cerebral ischemia) and registered correctly according to hospital guidelines were included.

Findings

An increase context-sensitive in-patient numbers with more severe cerebrovascular events and an increase in patient transfers from the Stroke to Neurology Unit within three days (70 percent, p=0.25) were noted. Clinical pathway implementation led to an increase in patient flow from the Emergency Department to dedicated specialized wards such as the Stroke and Neurology Unit (23.7 percent, p<0.001). Results revealed no statistically significant decrease in readmission rates within 30 days (5.7 percent, p=0.85) and no statistically significant differences in 30-day mortality.

Research limitations/implications

The pre-post retrospective observational study design was considered suitable to evaluate likely changes in patient flow after clinical pathway implementation, even though this design comes with limitations, describing only associations between exposure and outcome.

Originality/value

Clinical pathway implementation showed an overall positive effect on patient management and service efficiency owing to the standardized application in time-dependent protocols and multidisciplinary/integrated care implementation, which improved all phases in acute ischemic stroke care.

Details

International Journal of Health Care Quality Assurance, vol. 32 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0952-6862

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