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ESTABLISHING THE ROLE OF WORKERS IN POLICY IMPLEMENTATION: A CASE STUDY OF KENYATTA NATIONAL HOSPITAL
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ABSTRACT

Policy implementation is a key obligation of employees in organizations; however there are always challenges in an environment where there are factors unfavorable to its accomplishment. This study aspires to contribute to knowledge by generating and documenting information about the role of workers in policy implementation at Kenyatta National Hospital, the government and other institutions undertaking intervention strategies against poor or weak policy implementation by employees.

The specific study objectives   were to establish specific factors that affect implementation of the hospital’s policies; find out how management communicates with employees in matters of policy implementation; and identification of mechanisms that have been instituted by management to facilitate effective implementation of the institution’s policies by workers. Other objectives were to establish the extent to which workers’ participation in policy implementation has impacted on service delivery.

The study used both quantitative and qualitative data collection methods. Proportionate simple random sampling and systematic random sampling techniques were used in the selection of research participants who were derived from the workers in various hospital divisions, management and union officials. Primary data was collected directly from the respondents through interviews and questionnaires, while secondary data was collected from the hospital and workers’ union documents.

 The study established that the following factors affect policy implementation; inadequate involvement of workers in the formulation of the hospitals policies, poor terms and conditions of work, obsolete and inadequate tools and equipments, inadequate personnel, corruption, strategic planning models,  lack of proper performance indicators and inadequate resources.  The study also found out that the hospital’s management uses joint departmental committees, devolved system of operation, standard procedures of operation, and the use of Gemba kaizen philosophy to effect its policies.

This study recommends that the government should improve the employee terms and conditions of work; and KNH management should hire more workers since this will assist in the improvement of the time taken to fully implement a policy. The workers who are at lower levels should also be encouraged by the management through partial financial support or full scholarship to train in specialized areas that will make them more productive to the organization. KNH management needs to upgrade its tools and equipments like radiation machines, new electric adding machines, upgrading of the cashiering soft ware’s and theatre equipments. The management should consistently update their SMS data base for all staff to receive information and where the policy needs more elaboration then they should use a mode that captures the interest of all workers. KNH management should conduct a comprehensive job analysis in order to know the number of jobs and then match them with the right skills.

Finally, the research recommends that the same study be conducted after a period of three years when the current CEO’s contract ends to establish if the same relationships are maintained.  This is because this study was conducted when workers were very enthusiastic especially after hiring the new CEO and it could have influenced the outcome of this research.