When was the last time your organization performed a SWOT analysis? If you aren’t familiar with SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) it’s a widely used strategy in many industries, not just healthcare, for identifying areas for improvement. You can break SWOT down even further: Strengths: What sets your hospital apart from all the rest? What can you offer that makes you competitive? Weaknesses: What puts your hospital and employees at a disadvantage compared to other hospitals? What of these factors can you change? Opportunities: How can you show your strengths to others? Threats: What could cause big trouble for your hospital or employees?
Many people who talk about managed care don’t realize that it has actually been undergoing a bit of a renaissance since the late 1980s - and has existed conceptually since the ‘30s. Since the late ‘80s, MCOs have progressed through several phases: Phase 1: Using utilization review and pre-admission certification to manage access to care. Phase 2: The addition of fee-for-service networks and managing benefits. Phase 3: Shift from utilization review to utilization management with an emphasis on the ‘appropriateness’ of care as well as the care setting. Phase 4: The current phase of MCO development, which has only started in the last couple of years, looks at establishing a continuum of services, lessening the tendency for providers to operate in ‘silos’ which has been the dominant structure of healthcare in the U.S. for years.