The mission, vision and values in hospital management

Amélia Rego, Beatriz Araújo, Daniel Serrão

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review



Objective: Management depends on choices, on the hierarchy of actions, goals and values on which these decisions are founded, because values guide our actions. This study aims to identify the contents exposed in the vision, mission and values of the hospitals in the north of Portugal. It also aims to analyze the existence of content differentiation, based on the implemented management model. Methods: The design of this study is exploratory, descriptive, and explanatory. Thus, the data qualitative analysis was performed on the contents of the mission, values and vision publicized on the web pages available on 12th and 13th April 2014 in 36 Hospitals/Medical Centers of the National Health Service and hospitals linked with the Ministry of Health, for the purpose of the Integrated Management System of Subscribers to Surgery. Results: According to the definition of their mission, values and vision, the values on which hospitals are anchored focus on assistance, organization and management, quality, ethics and social responsibility. The expression of spirituality is limited to two hospitals. As for the hospital’s mission, spirituality is expressly assumed in six of the hospitals. Regarding the implemented management model, hospitals explicitly present their values, mission and vision, whether they are integrated into the National Health Service, irrespective of their legal nature (Public-Private Partnership or Public Enterprise), whether they are from the private or social sector. All of them claim to have ethical values, expressing the need to promote human dignity, the quality in the various areas and the holistic care to be provided. The concern of the private sector to add value for its employees, recipients and shareholders stands out. Conclusions: Managers recognize that ethics and human values are the foundation for the functioning of hospitals. They are aware that the mission, values and vision constitute accreditation criteria, acknowledging that they have a global reach. In the Social Sector, they are declared in the Quality Policy and in hospitals with a Public Enterprise management model they are framed in the Institutional Ethics Code.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)62-72
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Hospital Administration
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2016


  • Hospital
  • Mission
  • Vision
  • Values
  • Management
  • Organizational ethics


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