Disruptive Change Essay

Disruptive Change Essay

Disruptive Change

Like other organizations, health care organizations are not immune to change. They must embrace positive change to improve processes and outcomes. However, an organization’s ability to reap maximally from change-related gains depends on the type of change and how it occurs. Change can be disruptive or incremental.


Disruptive change affects an organization intensely, and health care organizations must be aware of such changes and prepare adequately. According to Sounderajah et al. (2021), disruptive change’s predominant element is innovation. It represents an organizational change that is not localized and eventually becomes irreversible since it changes the status quo. Generally, disruptive changes affect a significant portion of the industry due to innovation and inevitable evolution in operation trends. Such changes trigger a considerable shift in processes to fit customer demands. Typical health care disruptions include telemedicine, health informatics, and mobile health applications (Sounderajah et al., 2021). Conversely, incremental change is as it sounds. Shah and Godambe (2020) defined incremental change as the small, progressive innovation that occurs over time. It seeks to improve products and services gradually without transforming the organization’s basic structure or culture.

Disruptive change can be damaging if an organization does not cope effectively. According to Sounderajah et al. (2021), disruptive change prompts an organization to change and reinvent its operation model. For instance, the shift to telehealth programs prompted significant changes in operating models. Health care providers are assigned new roles as the organization adopts new structures and values. Disruptive change is also permanent. Hence, it transforms an organization’s culture, interprofessional collaboration, and patient-provider relationships, among other elements.

Change is part of organizational growth. However, its effects depend on the type and strategies organizations apply to adopt the change. Disruptive change mainly stems from innovations requiring organizations to reinvent themselves in response to new trends and customer demands. Incremental change is modular and occurs over time.

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Shah, R. K., &Godambe, S. A. (Eds.). (2020). Patient safety and quality improvement in healthcare: A case-based approach. Springer Nature.

Sounderajah, V., Patel, V., Varatharajan, L., Harling, L., Normahani, P., Symons, J., …& Ashrafian, H. (2021). Are disruptive innovations recognised in the healthcare literature? A systematic review. BMJ Innovations7(1). http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmjinnov-2020-000424

What is “disruptive change,” and how is this different from “incremental change?” How does disruptive change affect an organization? Provide an example.

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