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ABC Hospital that is located in Harris County, Texas has been providing acute care services in the area for the last sixty years. The current strategy that the hospital wants to adopt is to expand and include a gastroenterology short-stay unit. The proposed unit will be offering numerous services aimed at treating liver, pancreas, stomach anus, and esophagus disorders. The laboratory in the new unit will be performing colonoscopy, endoscopy, barium enema, and ultrasound procedures. The hospital is targeting adults from middle and low-income families with digestive and gastrointestinal problems. Harris County has a population of 4,441,370 people and almost seventy percent of them are minorities (United States Census Bureau, n.d.). Therefore, the proposed target market is the minority groups, mostly uninsured residents of Harris County.
The proposed project is necessary for the future growth of ABC Hospital. The facility’s mission is to provide efficient, compassionate, and affordable care while the vision is to continue being innovative and realizing clinical excellence. Notably, the proposed gastroenterology short-stay unit aims at improving clinical programs to attain the organization’s mission and vision. The unit will provide services that the low-income and ethnic minority groups in Harris County can afford. Before the introduction of the ACA, statistics indicated that African-Americans and Asians without insurance were 20 and 18 percent respectively (Sohn, 2017). Approximately a third of all Hispanics in the country were uninsured. Therefore, the proposed unit will accept offer affordable gastroenterology services while accepting Medicare, Medicaid, and worker’s compensation from the patients. Besides, projected volumes for the new unit in the first year will be 1275, then 1402.5, 1453.5, and 1530 for the second, third, and fourth year respectively thus the income is also expected to increase.
The first part of this strategic and marketing plan describes ABC Hospital, its location, neighborhood, model of care, and main competitors. The next section is the strategic plan with three years goals for the hospital. The strategic plan also includes the SWOT analysis of the hospital. Moreover, the revenue analysis shows the projection of the volumes for the new unit for the next four years and the payrolls. The final section of the paper is the marketing plan with the tactics the hospital will utilize to market the proposed unit. The hospital will spend about $26,050 in advertisements and the unit staff will be involved in marketing.
Table of Contents
Established in 1958, ABC Hospital is an acute care facility as well as a not-for-profit private foundation with 500 licensed beds. Emergency, intensive care, coronary care, cardiac care, and neonatal intensive care are some of the services that ABC Hospital provides the community. Notably, the mission of the facility is to create a healthy community by providing compassionate, patient-centered, efficient, and affordable care in a sustainable manner. ABC Hospital’s vision statement is to be leader in clinical excellence and innovation to address the health needs of our community. Harris County in Houston is the most populous county in Texas State and ABC Hospital is located there. According to records by the City of Houston (2019), the Harris County Hospital District operates LBJ General Hospital, Ben Taub General Hospital, and Quentin Mease Community Hospital. ABC Hospital also faces stiff competition from public and private health providers including the Texas Medical Center, which is the largest facility in the area.
ABC Hospital operates in a highly populated area with diverse communities. In 2014, the United States Census Bureau indicated that Harris County had a population of approximately 4,441,370 residents. Most of the individuals seeking healthcare from ABC Hospital are minorities and uninsured. The population of Harris County consists of 41.8 Hispanics, 31.4 percent non-Hispanic whites, 19.5 percent non-Hispanic African Americans, 7 percent Asians, 1.1 percent Native Americans, and only about 0.1 percent Pacific Islanders (United States Census Bureau, n.d. ).
ABC Hospital utilizes the modified total patient care model of care. According to King, Long, and Lisy (2014), the total patient care model involves allocating a nurse to a group of patients to deliver care throughout a shift. Nonetheless, the hospital must consider the patient acuity and the skills of the nurse when implementing the mentioned model. Furthermore, although a registered nurse is responsible for overseeing the delivery of care for the patients during the shift, he or she receives assists non-licensed patient care technicians. In ABC Hospital, the RN monitors the patients carefully and updates their physicians frequently. Since the RNs take care of a patient’s medical care episode from the beginning to the end, there is a close patient-nurse relationship. The RNs are able to fulfill the patients’ needs immediately thus reducing stress and increasing patient satisfaction. Allocating RNs to patients on a shift-by-shift basis has had positive results on the delivery of care in ABC Hospital.
In the past, ABC Hospital has been helping the Harris County community to solve its health problems. However, the facility intends to improve the services it offers in the community by opening a gastroenterology short-stay unit. The unit will service the residents suffering from various digestive disorders and gastrointestinal diseases. For ABC Hospital to realize its proposal, it has prepared a strategic plan. Notably, the strategic plan is necessary to enable the facility to open the new unit in line with the organizational vision, mission, and values. Therefore, the strategic plan will be useful in assisting the facility to use its available resources efficiently in opening the proposed unit. Currently, ABC Hospital has an additional space and talented physicians and surgeons necessary for the success of the proposed gastroenterology short-stay unit. Below is a strategic plan indicating the ABC Hospital’s three-year goals, SWOT analysis, and revenue analysis associated with the opening of the gastroenterology short-stay unit.
In the first year of the strategic plan, the goal would be to remodel the hospital’s current space to start a new gastroenterology unit. The old administrative office building will be redesigned to become the new gastroenterology unit. The management must consult the accounting cost center to determine the amount of finances required to redesign the old administrative building and convert it into a gastroenterology unit. The remodeling will take 18 to complete hence the accountant must set aside enough funds for the project. The supply and transport cost center will be involved in procuring the supplies needed to remodel the building.
The goal of the second year is to recruit additional staff to meet the staffing needs of the new gastroenterology unit. Although the hospital has many surgeons and physicians to support the expansion, the new unit still needs a gastroenterologist, a nutritionist, and a few more nurses. Therefore, the nursing administration and physician administrative cost centers should support the hiring of more staff. The unit will begin its operations even before the completion of the remodeling process. Since the redesigning of the building will be completed in the second half of the year, not all the additional professionals have to be hired at the same time.
By the third year, the remodeling will be complete and the unit will have started its operations. As such, the goal will be to use different marketing strategies to inform the community about the new gastroenterology unit. Social media marketing tools including Facebook and You Tube will be essential. For instance, the unit will post how-to-videos and stories showing people receiving gastroenterological services in the unit. Some nurses and physicians will also volunteer to educate the community about gastroenterological conditions and inform people about the quality services the unit would be providing. In the third year, the unit will also ensure the laboratory, radiology, and pharmacy cost centers are well equipped to handle the additional patients.
Organizational SWOT Analysis
The first strength of the hospital that will support the introduction of gastroenterology unit is good leadership and management. The management will make strategic decisions and provide visionary leadership to sustain the new unit. Health care leaders are supposed to be visionary to achieve strategic planning (Leger & Dunham-Taylor, 2018). The hospital has highly qualified professionals to provide specialized services in the new gastroenterology unit. Moreover, the strategic location of the hospital will support steady flow of patients to the new unit. Harris County is a populous region thus the hospital expects high volume of patients. Consequently, there is a possibility for the unit to generate high revenues. Lastly, the hospital has adopted information technology that will make provision of services in the new unit efficient.
One of the biggest weaknesses of the hospital that will slow down the project is inadequate budget allocation. If the hospital does not allocate enough finances to the project, the new unit might take more than two years to complete.Additionally, the hospital lacks some specialized skills hence it must hire more specialists for the gastroenterology unit to serve patients effectively. The hospital also lacks a pricing policy for clinic-based services, which can affect the revenue generation capacity of the new unit. Besides, the facility has few interdepartmental meetings that can affect collaboration of different health professionals working in the project (Leger & Dunham-Taylor, 2018).
The support from developmental partners presents the facility with an opportunity to receive funding for the implementation of the proposed project. The facility has community goodwill that will help the gastroenterology unit to have a positive image and improved revenue base. Furthermore, existence of professional networks creates an opportunity for the hospital to mobilize resources as well as exchange knowledge and skills necessary for service delivery in the new unit.
A threat for the implementation of the project in this strategic plan is the increasing levels of poverty in Harris County. For that reason, once the gastroenterology unit starts its operations, it might receive low revenues and face increased indebtedness. The limited hospital budget might also threaten the operations of the new unit. Additionally, the staff at the hospital receives uncompetitive remuneration that lowers morale and motivation. Such remuneration also increases staff turnover and the capacity of the gastroenterology unit to offer quality services.
In the following charts, the data from each phase will be analyzed separately.
|Hours||income||Payroll=hours worked*hourly rate|
The first rate of registered nurse is $28 per hour, the second can therefore be calculated by (0.2*28+ 28) = 29.4. As payroll is number of hours worked* hourly rate, so for the first hour it will remain as it is i.e. 28 and for the second can be calculated as (29.4*2) which is equal to 58.8.
As volume projected for the first year is given as 1275, it can be calculated for the next ones too. For the second year, the percentage increase is 10%, hence it can be calculated as (0.1*1275+1275).Similarly for the third year, and volume increases by 14%, the volume can be calculated in the similar way as (0.14*1275+1275).
Marketing in the healthcare sector must be done correctly, as it is crucial for the growth of a facility. Firstly, the marketing strategies that a hospital uses should match the strategic plan. The marketing plan will show how the proposed gastroenterology short-stay unit at ABC Hospital will offer superior services than the competitors do. Furthermore, the marketing strategies are necessary in promoting the growth of the proposed gastroenterology short-stay unit because it will inform current and potential patients about the new services. There is a possibility of an increase of patients, revenues, and profits due to the marketing efforts. The marketing plan reflects the ability of ABC Hospital to provide quality services to all patients. Essentially, the marketing plan below presents the hospital’s market share analysis including its competition and payer mix, as well as promotion activities and period of the marketing strategies. The marketing plan also explains the outcome measures of the plan’s effectiveness and possible disruptions.
The Texas Medical Center in Harris County is the biggest competitor in the area. Located in the south-central Houston neighborhood, the facility serves patients from all socioeconomic backgrounds. The Ertan Digestive Disease Center (EDDC) in Texas Medical Center offers outstanding gastroenterology services focusing on pancreas, colon, intestines, esophagus, small bowel, stomach, and liver disorders (McGovern Medical School, n.d.). Due to its accessibility to abundant resources, The Texas Medical Center has innovative treatments for gastroenterological diseases. Furthermore, the hospital has a good reputation locally, nationally, and globally. However, the digestive disease center at Texas Medical Center is an outpatient unit unlike ABC Hospital’s gastroenterology unit that will be a short-stay. Besides, Texas Medical Center is an extremely large facility and patients might have difficulties finding the digestive disease center. The unit also starts its operations at 8:00 a.m. and closes at 5:00 p.m. only.
The other competitors are the Ben Taub Hospital and the LBJ Hospital that are part of the Harris County Hospital District. Ben Taub Hospital is a major safety net facility with 600 licensed beds focusing on disadvantaged individuals in Harris County (City of Houston, 2019). The hospital’s gastrointestinal unit offers both in-patient and outpatient services and the endoscopy laboratory conducts around 500 procedures monthly. LBJ Hospital is also a safety net facility in Harris County providing acute care services with 328 licensed beds. The gastroenterology at LBJ Hospital is large considering it offers at least 100 in-patient services, about 7000 outpatient visits, and 5000 endoscopy procedures annually respectively (City of Houston, 2019). Ben Taub and LBJ Hospital might pose a huge competition to the proposed gastroenterology short-stay unit considering they are established facilities and they provide both outpatient and inpatient gastroenterological services.
The current payer mix of ABC Hospital is 37.9, 4.5, 38.8, 6, 10.6, and 2.2 percent for Medicare, Medicaid, managed care (HMO/PPO), private pay, other insurance, and worker’s compensation respectively. Although there is no right payer mix, healthcare facilities must consider their target market when finding the best payer mix (Leger & Dunham-Taylor, 2018). ABC Hospital will alter its payer mix when implementing the proposed project. Notably, hospitals receive less reimbursements that the costs they used to offer care from Medicare and Medicaid. However, the new gastroenterology short-stay unit will target low-income and minority populations in Harris County and most of them do not have private insurance. Therefore, the payer mix will consist of 50 percent from government reimbursements and 50 percent from other sources. Specifically, the new payer mix will be Medicare 35%; Medicaid 15 %; worker’s compensation 5%, private insurance 5%, Managed Care (HMO/PPO) 30% and other insurance 10%.
The activities being promoted are gastroenterological services such as treatment for disorders and cancers of the anus, pancreas, stomach, liver, and esophagus as well as procedures such as endoscopy, barium enema, ultrasound, and colonoscopy. The project will be marketed using advertising promotion activities. Various forms of advertising including radio, television, mobile phones, and the Internet would be the main form of promotion. Essentially, radio and television are affordable ways of advertisement and target mass audience regardless of age and socioeconomic status. The hospital will develop an attractive website and advertise the new gastroenterological services it would be offering. Internet platforms including Facebook and Twitter are useful advertising tools in healthcare (Radu et al., 2017). Printed brochures will also be given to patients. The annual marketing budget for the new unit includes:
Internet adverts $500
Mobile phone texts $250
Promotional brochures $750
The personnel working in the proposed gastroenterological unit will be involved in carrying out the promotion activities. Firstly, nurses, physicians, nutritionists, and nursing assistants would be requested to give their patients the promotional brochures. The health professionals will also be involved in sending promotional text messages to their patients. The front desk employees will also have promotional brochures that they will be distributing to people who visit the hospital. The nurses and physicians will also form a multi-professional committee that will be responsible for Internet advertisements, and development of radio and television advertisements.
The website will be developed within the first month in the first year when the new unit starts its operations. At the same time, the unit will start advertising the new gastroenterological services on Facebook and Twitter. In the second month of the first year, the hospital will start the radio and television advertisements to attract potential customers. At this time, the unit will have printed the promotional brochures and started giving its existing customers.
The new gastroenterology unit in ABC Hospital will target residents of Harris County, Texas. The target market will comprise of adults, both male and female with gastroenterological health problems. Furthermore, since more than half of the population of Harris County consists of minority populations, the unit aims at serving the minority ethnicities. The average per capita income for Harris County residents is $53,188 (United States Census Bureau, n.d.). Therefore, the proposed unit will focus on the population with a per capita income $48,000 and below. Besides, the target market will include low and medium-income residents mostly under Medicaid, Medicare, and worker’s compensation. The target patients will have high school diplomas and others will not have completed high school.
The first outcome measure of the marketing plan effectiveness is new product success. The marketing plan will be considered successful if the operations of the new gastroenterology short-stay unit are successful. The unit should be able to provide high quality and affordable gastroenterology services after the marketing activities. Another measure for measuring the success of a marketing plan in an organization is the size of the market share (Katsikeas, Leonidou, Morgan, & Hult, 2015). A successful marketing plan means the unit should be able to attract a large market size. The number of patients receiving services in the new gastroenterology short-stay unit should continue increasing. The revenue growth is another measure to identify the marketing plan efficacy. Although the majority of the target market is from low-income backgrounds, the unit should still expect its revenue to continue rising over time.
The marketing plan might not work as expected because of different disruptions. The first possible disruption is the actions of the competition. Notably, the competitors might respond to ABC Hospital’s marketing efforts by attracting more patients in the area. Ben Taub Hospital, LBJ Hospital, and the Texas Medical Center are large facilities that already have a positive reputation in Harris County. Therefore, they might disrupt ABC Hospital’s plan of marketing its gastroenterology services. Currently, ABC Hospital has only one gastroenterologist and the marketing could be disrupted if he leaves the hospital. The unit would not have a specialist and it would be unable to serve patients.
ABC Hospital is an acute care facility that has been operating in Harris County, Texas since 1958. The facility uses the modified total patient care model of care that involves an RN offering care to patients throughout a shift. Although the hospital has been meeting the health needs of its community, it intends to expand its services to include a gastroenterology short-stay unit.
The strategic plan indicates the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats in ABC Hospital’s environment. Furthermore, the strategic plan explains that in the first year the hospital will remodel the old administrative office building into the new gastroenterology unit and hire additional staff in the second year. In the third year, the plan is to develop marketing strategies to promote the new gastroenterology unit in Harris County. Therefore, ABC Hospital prepared a marketing plan to translate the goals of the strategic plan of increasing the demand of the services in the proposed gastroenterology unit. Notably, the marketing plan borrows from the strategic plan to show ABC Hospital’s competition in offering gastroenterology services. The unit will face stiff competition from Ben Taub Hospital, Texas Medical Center, and the LBJ Hospital. Finally, the facility will involve nurses, gastroenterologists, and other health professionals in advertising the new unit’s services. The advertisement will occur through the radio, television, printed brochures, and the Internet.
- City of Houston. (2019). About Houston. Retrieved from https://www.houstontx.gov/abouthouston/health.html
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- McGovern Medical School. (n.d.). Ertan Digestive Disease Center. Retrieved from https://med.uth.edu/internalmedicine/gastroenterology-hepatology-and-nutrition/patient-care-2/ertan-digestive-disease-center-2/
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- Radu, G., Solomon, M., Gheorghe, C. M., Hostiuc, M., Bulescu, I. A., & Purcarea, V. L. (2017). The adaptation of health care marketing to the digital era. Journal of Medicine and Life, 10(1), 44–46. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5304370/
- United States Census Bureau . (n.d.). U.S. Census Bureau Quick Facts: Harris County, Texas. Retrieved from https://www.census.gov/quickfacts/harriscountytexas
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