Gillies AC and Howard J (2011) Information as change agent or barrier in health care reform?

Health care systems across the world are in a state of flux. If the experience of the early 1990s can be used as a model, the recent global economic downturn will lead to very significant pressures to reduce spending and achieve better value. Systems have provided a range of approaches to modeling and evaluating these more complex organizations, from simple process models to complex adaptive systems. This paper considers the pros and cons of such approaches and proposes a new modeling approach that combines the best elements of other techniques. This paper also describes a case study, where the approach has been deployed by the authors. The case study comes from health care services in Ontario, Canada, who are shifting from the traditionally hospital-based system to one that recognizes a greater role for community and primary care services.