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Healthcare leaders are facing increasing financial pressures from dwindling reimbursements and increased competition that put cost-reducing measures at the forefront of many minds. As a healthcare leader, you can improve your hospital’s operations and profit margin by taking advantage of these four strategies.
1Implement Bundling Strategies
Hospitals, health systems and other healthcare facilities should standardize and bundle outsourced services – and consider outsourcing departments which are not central to their expertise. Healthcare organizations that standardize operating procedures and vendors minimize variability, which can have positive implications for patient outcomes and cost.
Reduce costs and provide high-value patient care by:
- Bundling charges for the overall care of a patient’s particular medical condition.
- Limiting the number of variations in how you perform medical procedures.
- Avoiding repetitive or duplicate laboratory and radiology testing.
- Implementing an effective tracking system that indicates why tests and procedures were ordered.
- Ensuring better patient compliance after a procedure to reduce the risk of complications.
2Optimize Foodservice and Other Support Services
Are your support services programs defying your bottom line? Annual spending on clinical engineering, food, and environmental services alone don’t usually make up a large portion of a hospital’s annual expenses. However, combined support services put a growing burden on your institution’s budget.
Here are a few tips to help optimize these services and reduce costs:
- Periodically review your clinical engineering contracts, and consolidate.
- Standardize environmental service to eliminate variability which can mitigate HAI risk, and reduce costs.
- Outsource and standardize foodservice to capitalize on a vendor’s economies of scale.
- Consolidate support services vendors where possible.
- Partner with patient transportation to reduce room turnaround time.
3Engage Your Staff
Employee engagement is an important part of any organization’s plan to increase profits because constantly recruiting, hiring and re-training staff is expensive. Focus on boosting employee satisfaction and fostering a positive work environment to help combat turnover and reduce costs.
Prioritize employee engagement and create a positive work environment with these strategies:
- Encourage employees to formulate ways to reduce spending in their departments.
- Institute recognition programs for your staff members’ successes.
- Use mistakes as opportunities for additional training and development.
- Offer incentives for exceptional performance, such as cash bonuses and improved working conditions.
- Lead with forward-thinking strategies that set up your organization for success.
4Upgrade Software Systems
The future is here today, and the sooner your hospital makes use of modern computerized maintenance management systems, the better. Taking advantage of today’s innovative technology has numerous benefits for both patients and doctors, from more efficient operations to better care.
Technology is always improving, allowing doctors to do what they do best by:
- Reducing manual labor costs with streamlined processes.
- Allowing information to be seamlessly transferred between departments and facilities.
- Digitizing patient charts for more accuracy and a lower chance for costly and harmful errors.
- Tracking asset and equipment location, maintenance history, and availability.
- Quickly and effectively responding to patient requests.
The constant rigors of healthcare reform and declining reimbursements are compelling hospitals like yours to scrutinize their spending. If you’re looking for new ways to cut healthcare costs, start formulating your hospital’s plan with these four strategies.