In light of the complexity of heath care operations, an effective governance framework is necessary to function well in the boardroom. In addition to ongoing changes and operating mainly with the principles of Policy Governance® as a primary element (Governance Policy GP-1 Global Governance Commitment), the Southern Health-Santé Sud model blends supplemental concepts deemed most appropriate in addressing the dynamic and changing nature of health care governance. This blended mix has led to combined aspects of an effective governance system.

The Policy Governance model starts with the acknowledgment that the Board’s existence and accountability is to ensure that ‘the organization works’. All authority resides with the Board, other than what is delegated to the Chief Executive Officer. Policy Governance embraces that the Boards’ primary relationships be with the public. Leadership is practiced in three modes of governance:

  • oversight (fiduciary)
  • foresight (strategic) and
  • insight (generative)

policiesThe Southern Health-Santé Sud’s Board of Directors governs with a style which emphasizes:

  • consultation with the residents and health care providers in the regional health authority
  • acceptance of diversity in viewpoints
  • strategic leadership more than administrative detail
  • clear distinction of Board and staff roles collective rather than individual decisions and
  • being future oriented and proactive

Governance is not management, one step up. It is ownership, one step down.