Using the SWOT Framework in the Healthcare Sector
(6 pages of text)
Analyzing an organization using the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (SWOT) framework generates crucial insights for decisions on major new initiatives. For example, when considering an acquisition or launching a new product or service, a SWOT analysis can raise warnings about customer sensitivities or gaps in expertise; alternatively, it can reveal new lines of business and unmet needs that may lead to new business opportunities. A SWOT analysis also serves as a typical first step in a broader strategic planning process. This technical note focuses on the use of a SWOT analysis in the healthcare sector, including recommendations for key questions to ask when initiating a SWOT analysis and advice for arranging information in a way that supports strategic decision-making.
The SWOT approach has gained importance in the healthcare sector in recent years due to both market and policy shifts. Healthcare is a site for major reform as policy-makers seek to reduce costs and encourage innovation. Across the developed world and in many developing countries, better strategic decision-making is essential to healthcare providers and finance organizations as they care for ageing populations, seek to reduce the impacts of lifestyle-related diseases such as obesity, and work to manage expenses associated with treating chronic diseases. This technical note is ideal for use with product no. 9B16M084
Students can make use of the SWOT framework to analyze healthcare organizations, especially hospitals. Applying the SWOT framework prepares students for strategic planning that identifies strength–opportunity strategies, strength–threat strategies, weakness–opportunity strategies, and weakness–threat strategies.
Health Care Services
Canada; United States, 2004
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