As U.S. government policy grows more focused on moving to a value-based model, healthcare delivery organizations are being driven to prioritize the value they deliver to payers and patients over volume of services.  Historically, healthcare delivery organizations have defined value in narrow terms like complication and mortality rates.  In addition, processes were designed to meet the needs of the physician, not the patient.  This, however, is beginning to change.

The voice of the consumer is becoming louder and more insistent as the percentage of healthcare costs that fall to patients has grown. Hospitals competing in this environment need to adopt a market-based model centered on transparency, accountability for outcomes, and customer choice.  This demands a much broader framework for evaluating value, and for that, healthcare executives would be wise to look at other industries. A more useful framework is one drawn from the world of retail sales that incorporates what are known as the 7 Ps of the marketing mix.

The marketing mix is not a new concept.  It was originally developed in 1953 by Neil Borden, President of the American Marketing Association, to look at product, price, place and promotion.  Since then, it has been expanded to include people, process and physical evidence.  Here’s how the seven components of the marketing mix translate into the healthcare delivery context.

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