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Perpetual Mercy Hospital’s Innovations

Downtown Health Clinic, a branch of Perpetual Mercy Hospital is faced with potential competition from a similar rival clinic slated for opening within its territorial market. A competing clinic within its niche market is a hindrance to DHC’s progress towards achieving its service and profitability goals. In addition, it is expected that the competing facility will have an impact on the emergency, worker’s compensation, and employment or insurance physicals, and would impact on the existing and potential consumers of its services (Boone & Kurtz 2006).

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These threats facing DHC could be attributed to certain changes in the business operations and can be explained by the various innovations in the sector. The first innovation was the preventive health care programs, which are the health maintenance organizations (HMOs) and preferred provider organizations (PPOs). The HMOs were aimed at enhancing preventive health care by providing medical services as needed for a fixed monthly charge to reduce the lead time of hospital in patients and medical bills. PPOs were to create contractual relationships between health care providers and large employers’ organizations so as to offer subsidies for using preferred providers instead of constraining people to specific providers.

The second innovation was ambulatory health care services and facilities. These services are those that patients require on an emergency or periodical basis and include physical examinations, treatment of minor emergencies, and common sicknesses. If a provider registers under this category, it is required to operate on a 24-hour basis and be equipped with supporting equipment. Over the years, the number of ambulatory health care services and facilities has multiplied due to two factors: first, advances in medical technology, miniaturization, and portable medical equipment have made more diagnostic and surgical procedures possible outside of traditional clinic settings. Secondly, patients have adopted a more proactive approach to where they seek health and medical services. Thirdly, the rise of paramedical practitioners and standardized treatment practices has changed the traditional role of medical and health care.

DHC being a general hospital, these innovations aggregated together have had an impact on its operations. Although ambulatory facilities do not offer direct competition to DHC, their localities in the prime areas draw many of its potential consumers, especially in the urban people who prefer ambulatory health care facilities.

Despite the threats facing DHC and PMH in general, the facility has several opportunities at hand. Foremost, the facility should concentrate more on attaining its four objectives, which are; expand its referral base, increasing referrals of privately insured patients, establishing a liaison with the business community by addressing employers’ specific health needs, and becoming self-independent. To achieve this facility should position itself as convenient, personalized alternatives to primary care practitioners’ services. It should implement an aggressive, sophisticated marketing strategy, by considering brand-building strategies, promotional packs, and informational marketing. It can also extend its operating hours from the normal time and if it is possible it could implement 24-hour services like its major competitors, the ambulatory facilities. For future expansion plans, PMH should relocate to more prime areas, which are accessible and have ample parking for the consumers (Roger & Robert 2010).

The hospital should consider reducing the waiting time for the consumers by either putting more queuing lines, scheduling physicians or attending fewer patients at a go, although this would contradict its objective of increasing the number of referrals. The facility should also consider offering more services other than those offered by the competitors, for instance, gynecological services. The clinic should also strive to improve its relations with the business community through mass-media marketing and organizing business-initiated visits.

Reference list

Boone, P. & Kurtz, L. (2006). Contemporary Business, 11th Ed. New York. McGraw-Hill Irwin.

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Roger, K. & Robert P. (2010). Strategic Marketing Problems. New York: Prentice Hall, Inc.

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