1. Issel, L. Michele PhD, RN

Article Content

The lead article in this issue focuses on high-performance work practices (Song, Robbins, Garman, & McAlearney, 2012), completing a set of three articles regarding a single research project (Garman, McAlearney, Harrison, Song, & McHugh, 2011; McAlearney et al., 2011). This set of articles is not simply partitions of findings done to increase the number of publications. They are notable, in part, for reasons relating to the notion of a set of articles about one research project and, in part, for reasons specific to the themes of the articles. I rarely get requests to publish a set of articles generated from a single research project. Publishing this final article provides an opportunity to draw from these articles a few points broadly applicable to Health Care Management Review (HCMR) submissions.

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The articles, published over the course of a year, demonstrate and exemplify how complicated stories about health care management do not fit neatly into a complete single package. This suggests the need to for authors to be flexible in telling the story and for me as the editor to be flexible in accepting parts of that story. One of the consequences of being flexible is the implication for publishing the story in a timely manner. The reality is that publishing all parts of a story in a single issue of HCMR may not be feasible. In addition, HCMR gives high priority to publishing the parts of the story as they are ready to be told. Doing so demonstrates our commitment to publish the information as expeditiously as possible and thus increase dissemination. This is consistent with our publish-ahead-of-print policy.


Notable in this set of articles, although certainly not unique to these articles, is the mix of individuals from practice-academe as reflected in the team of authors. Generally, I find that when the authorship of articles submitted to HCMR has this combination, the articles tend to be more solid, with more immediate practice relevance. Articles that have been vetted by those whose practice we aim to change have stronger and more generalizable interventions. Another key benefit is that the implications drawn from the findings are more practice-focused and directive.


The first article in the set, by Garman et al. (2011), as the starting point of the story, provides an example of how a comprehensive literature synthesis can result in a midrange theory. Too often, literature reviews fail to fully integrate and synthesize and thus fail to provide readers with a path forward. Syntheses of frameworks and theories are needed along with synthesis of research results. HCMR welcomes and encourages rigorous and provocative literature synthesis that truly advance rather than summarize a topic.


Surely, other articles and sets of articles bring these elements together, but as a set, these three articles provide an exemplar of several strengths to which HCMR aspires.


L. Michele Issel, PhD, RN






Garman A. N., McAlearney A. S., Harrison M. I., Song P. S., McHugh M. (2011). Toward a high-performance management system in health care. Part one: Development of an evidence-informed Model. Health Care Management Review, 36 (3), 201-213. [Context Link]


McAlearney A. S., Garman A. N., Song P. H., McHugh M., Robbins J., Harrison M. I. (2011). High-performance work systems in health care management. Part two: Qualitative evidence from five case studies. Health Care Management Review, 36 (3), 214-226. [Context Link]


Song P. H., Robbins J., Garman A. N., McAlearney A. S. (2012). High-performance work systems in health care. Part three: The role of the business case. Health Care Management Review, 37 (2), 110- 121. [Context Link]