Background: The increasing economic pressure characterizes the current situation in health care and the need to justify medical decisions and organizational processes due to limited financial resources is omnipresent. Physicians tend to interpret this development as a decimation of their own medical influence. This becomes even more obvious after a change in hospital ownership i.e. from a public to a private profit oriented organization. In this case each work procedure is revised.
To date, most research studies have focused mainly on differences between hospitals of different ownership regarding financial outcomes and quality of care, leaving important organizational issues unexplored. Little attention has been devoted to the effects of hospital ownership on physicians' working routines.
The aim of this observational real time study is to deliver exact data about physicians' work at hospitals of different ownership.
Methods: The consequences of different management types on the organizational structures of the physicians' work situation and on job satisfaction in the ward situation are monitored by objective real time studies and multi-level psycho diagnostic measurements.
Discussion: This study is unique in its focus. To date no results have been found for computer-based real time studies on work activity in the clinical field in order to objectively evaluate a physician's work-related stress. After a complete documentation of the physicians' work processes the daily work flow can be estimated and systematically optimized. This can stimulate an overall improvement of health care services in Germany.