Reasons of medical staff resistance against innovations

Algimantas Jasulaitis, Juris Plenta, Viktoras Justickis, Jolita Plentienė


Every new scientific achievement opens new opportunity to help patients. However, for such opportunity to be used the relevant preconditions have to be provided. They include organizational, managerial, technologic and legal innovations.
An important obstacle for implementation of these innovations is the traditional resistance of medical staff against innovations. This resistance follows, on the one side, from the great responsibility of health care staff for their decisions. However, on the other side, the prudence caused by this responsibility provides the soil for conservatism, selfish and irrational resistance to any changes. It slows the development of the health care, causes its stagnation, problems using the new science.
This paper sets forth the outcome of the empirical investigation of motives causing the resistance to innovation in two Lithuanian health care institutions.
The investigation discovered the large set of motives that stipulate resistance against innovations, demonstrated the most influential motives, having the greatest impact upon the general resistance to innovations. The salient latent factors behind the innovation resistance motives have been revealed and interpreted. The first latent factor has been interpreted as “ One’s participation in carrier bounded competition”. Its bases was one’s fear that innovation can in some way threaten one’s position within the institution (by supporting competitors, lowering one’s one prestige, and etc.). This factor was caused by shortcomings in the institution’s service ladder, which does not support innovations, makes resistance to them preferable.
The second factor has been interpreted as “Resistance of the staff against new unpaid working load” that can be caused by innovation. This factor is caused by shortcomings in the institution’s reward system which does not ensures material incentives for innovations.
Keywords: innovations in the health care, resistance to innovations, structure of the resistance to innovations.
The outcomes of research showed the necessity of measures able to integrate innovation process with the systems of promotion and work load regulation.
Two general latent factors causing the motives of resistance against innovations have been detected. Their interconnections with health care institution’s organisational problems has been demonstrated.


innovation in the health care institution; resistance against innovations; motives of resistence against innovations

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"Health Policy and Management" ISSN online 2029-9001 / ISSN print 2029-3569