White PaperHealthcare Analytics

5 Considerations When Developing Service Line Priorities

Healthcare organizations don’t succeed by accident. Organizational success most often comes from intentional and purposeful planning. Today’s hospitals face shrinking reimbursements, shifting reimbursement models and an increasing focus on reducing costs and utilization — making planning even more important. To succeed in this environment, you must plan with purpose. It helps you grow in areas that improve organizational return and protect profitability. It also keeps you focused on your core mission, helping you avoid wasteful strategies. To help you we’ve created this white paper with considerations for developing service line priorities.

Learn these factors that will help you develop service line priorities:

1. Understand how each service line fits within your mission, vision & values.

While your organization likely has multiple service lines, not all of them are crucial to the mission and vision of your organization. 

2. Measure the service line’s capacity & readiness for growth.

Before attempting to market or grow a specific service line, ask yourself if that service line is ready for growth. 

3. Quantify the market opportunity for growth.

Just as service line planning and optimization should include time spent examining internal factors, it should also involve careful evaluation of external factors like the market opportunity for growth and competition within your market. 

4. Determine the service line’s value to your organization.

Service line value will vary for every organization. A number of factors determine service line value. A service line you find profitable or worth prioritizing might be just the opposite for another organization. 

5. Identify current & planned patient pathways.

Begin your patient pathway analysis by considering existing pipelines into each service line. Understand how to best reach patients in those pipelines. You must also consider how shifting demographics and market conditions will affect those pipelines in the future. Planning based exclusively on the past can send you in the wrong direction. 

“How will growing a particular service line affect your organizational metrics and brand in the community? Consider patient satisfaction and physician satisfaction scores within the service line. Will adding volume within this service line improve perceptions of the hospital?”