For many years health managers felt at a disadvantage in not having a professional journal of our own. In September 2006 the first issue of Health Manager was published and proved an immediate success. In the following three years the journal built on that initial success and became noted for the consistently high quality and variety of the articles that appeared in it. The journal addressed in a frank and balanced way the big topics of the time and complemented them with lighter items such as book reviews, travel stories and interesting health services personality profiles. In 2009 Health Manager was short listed for the Business to Business Magazine of the Year award.
It soon became apparent that a professional journal, even a very good one, published in the conventional way, can meet only some of the expectations and wishes of members of a membership organisation. Feedback we received strongly suggested that members would like to receive timely but considered reactions, from a manager’s perspective, on the big healthcare issues as they occur. They would sometimes like to have an opportunity to comment briefly on the articles they read. They would like to be included in surveys of how managers view important issues and they would like to see the results reported soon after the survey is conducted. They would like to be offered opportunities to express their opinions on important topics and get a sense of the extent to which their views are shared by others. Members lead busy personal and working lives and often do not find it possible to attend important events that are organised by the Institute. They would like that the Institute would record and make available, to access at their convenience, a record of proceedings.
As time went on it became clear to us that the members are keen to interact in ways that modern means of communication are capable of facilitating. We have decided, therefore, to move to a very modern form of communication using electronic media. It will retain the title Health Manager; will continue to bring members articles of the quality we associate with that title and will still be edited by Maureen Browne. It will also do a great deal more. It will contain video clips; facilitate the publication of readers’ comments on articles and easy to complete surveys and opinion polls will feature regularly. Very importantly, Health Manager will be published at shorter intervals than has been possible up until now. You will be advised by email when a new issue is published. Health Manager will be easy to access and to navigate. Everything published will be archived for easy access at any time and more extensive versions of many articles will be published on our website.
We have put a great deal of time and effort into enhancing Health Manager so that it achieves the potential to support healthcare managers in their work and personal development. You, the readers, will be the judges of that by using the opportunities it will contain and by letting us have your valuable advice on how it can be improved.
I hope you like the new Health Manager and will let me have your reaction to it.