Hospital Management Practices may be defined as a set of practices and steps that are aimed at enhancing a hospital's management of its processes. These could include operations, patient care, information systems, pharmacy management, waste management, risk management and many other disciplines.
Seen in this sense, almost all areas of the hospital apart from those mentioned above, such as IT systems, bed management and inventory management and several other areas are included in the gamut of Hospital Management Practices.
Ensuring proper coordination and, where required, integration of these functions is at the core of Hospital Management Practices. Like any other discipline, best practices in Hospital Management too, help to optimize their efficiency and reduce costs and overruns at various points.
These Hospital Management Practices are a gradual result of the experience players have gained in the industry by being there. Their collective experience has given shape to best practices in the field. A finding that gets consistently thrown up by research and gets substantiated from time to time is the strong link between Hospital Management Practices and enhanced productivity and positivity in patient and quality outcomes.
The choice of these Hospital Management Practices may not be standard, because they are dependent on the hospital's size, management, specialties, location and so on.
Moreover, it is also the case that these Hospital Management Practices vary from time to time with the onset of technologies, regulatory guidelines, industry updates and so on. So, Hospital Management Practices are seldom set in stone.
Generally, a few Hospital Management Practices that have gained acceptance and credence are the following:
Ensuring patient satisfaction: This is a no-brainer, since the core aim of any healthcare organization is the satisfaction it offers to the patient. This is the ultimate Hospital Management Practice, because all practices are charted out and implemented with the aim of increasing ROI, the direct and most potent cause of which is patient satisfaction. Patient satisfaction goes beyond coordinating functions such as billing, admission and even medication. The human care that is given to the patient from the caregiver is the most potent reason for ensuring patient satisfaction.
Ensuring proper IT systems: IT systems are now indispensable to carrying out a number of complex functions and tasks within the hospital setting. An IT system that flounders at crucial times is a big source of frustration for the hospital management and retards smooth functioning. Robust and efficient IT systems are needed for coordinating a number of core data across the various departments. So, an important Hospital Management Practice is to have a reliable IT system.
Ensuring proper control of outsourced assets and activities: Outsourcing is here to stay, and is likely to be here for as long as hospitals are going to dot our nation's landscape. It is critical to ensure that the hospital takes utmost care to see what is outsourced, how this is managed, and how to get the best out of these, while being in control of what is outsourced.
Ensuring judicious use of the social media: The social media are ubiquitous in their presence. They too, like outsourcing, are part of a hospital's bloodstream. Hospital Management Practices consist of being able to prudently handle this platform, because while it brings enormous advantages, one botch can breach critically confidential data, resulting in incalculable loss of reputation and money.