Benchmarking in Healthcare

Today, healthcare leaders are faced with an important, but often difficult, task: improving the quality of care while remaining competitive in the marketplace and staying within ever-tighter budgets. As you work toward your Executive Master of Healthcare Administration online, it’s important that you understand the role benchmarking may play in your future career.

What is Benchmarking?

Benchmarking involves using standards of excellence to determine performance. Hospitals use these standards to evaluate their work relative to competitors, industry leaders and national organizations. Competitive benchmarking involves measuring against the competition, where collaborative benchmarking involves sharing knowledge about a specific activity with the goal of improving the performance of hospitals as a whole.

Challenges and Conditions for Success

Methods and data are both likely to be sources of challenges for healthcare leaders engaging in networking. When data is not handled correctly, everything used for the nine-step benchmarking method explored in the infographic below can be skewed. Careful preparation of the process, monitoring of relevant indicators, staff involvement and inter-organizational visits are all conditions that should be met for success in the benchmarking process.

Five Hospital Benchmarks

As you hone your healthcare leadership acumen, you will likely work with at least some of these give hospital benchmarks:

  • Heart Attack Patients
  • Outpatients with Chest Pain or Possible Heart Attack
  • Emergency Department Care
  • Overall Hospital Rating
  • Hospital Adjusted Expenses Per Inpatient Day

See the details and where today’s organizations currently stand in the below infographic: