Operations Assessments

Psychiatric Hospital Operations Assessments and Planning

Our Behavioral Health Operations Assessment improves program quality, safety, compliance, profit and market position

Schafer Consulting is a national behavioral health consultant firm improving psychiatric service lines since 1993

Clients include hospitals, health systems, medical and academic medical centers throughout the United States

Operations Assessments to Improve Behavioral Health Services

This fully tailored operations assessment for behavioral health service lines takes into account the needs of organizations with one or more psychiatric and/or substance abuse treatment services, often in multiple locations, with varied levels of care.

Psychiatric Service Line Challenges

The challenges facing behavioral health service lines are diverse for each organization, but cluster around the following: high patient acuity, financial losses, increasing costs, low reimbursement, productivity, competition, regulations, patient safety, compliance, Emergency Department boarding, and patient satisfaction.

Operations Assessment Steps:

1. On Site Assessment & Key Metrics Review

We provide an operations assessment for behavioral health services to hospitals and health systems, psychiatric inpatient units, residential treatment centers and outpatient clinics. We meet with leadership, physicians, clinicians and staff on site and we conduct a detailed review of key metrics.

We assess all aspects of an organization’s operations and provide a comprehensive report and Management Action Plan to guide improvement. Each assessment is fully tailored to the client, but several typical elements of the assessment include:

  • Comprehensive on-site evaluation of the current services including service access, organization structure, volumes, patient and staff safety, CMS and Joint Commission compliance, payer mix, program model and quality
  • Analysis of staffing skill mix and productivity, including professionals and physicians with comparison to national benchmarks, metrics and best practices
  • Assessment of operational workflows like patient scheduling, intake, access, movement and coordination between inpatient, outpatient, and emergency department throughput
  • Strategic position relative to market opportunities
  • Review of sentinel events, critical incidents, licensing issues, quality management and improvement indicators and outcomes
  • Evaluation of program model relative to patient population, patient schedule, clinical services, continuum of care, and care coordination structures
  • Best Practice gap analysis comparing clinical and business metrics to national benchmarks and processes
  • Examination and review of key findings with executive management and identified staff
  • Development of a detailed Management Action Plan (MAP) and sequence that provides a clear path of action for moving forward

2. Report of Findings and Recommendations

This tailored and comprehensive assessment results in a written, detailed, quantified report that details findings, recommendations strategies and work plan to meet the project goals.

3. Management Action Plan (MAP) for Performance Improvement

We are uniquely focused on developing and implementing successful “on the ground” operations due to our experience as senior hospital executives and psychiatric hospital owners. Our success with transforming operations comes from connecting real world business requirements to behavioral health operations, and providing the client with unique tools to measure and track performance.

Operations Assessment Benefits

The Operations Assessment is customized for use by your hospital and includes a clear, independent and professional evaluation of selected key aspects of the behavioral health services, which may include:

  • Cost effective service delivery efficiency and quality
  • Optimal organizational structure
  • Reduced operating costs
  • Increased average daily census and outpatient volume
  • Increased revenue and revenue cycle efficiency
  • Improved staff and provider productivity
  • Identified market and new program opportunities including specialty units and services
  • Comparison to national benchmarks for select indicators
  • New revenue opportunities
  • Improved clinical outcomes
  • Positioning for continued healthcare reform
  • Innovative behavioral health integration model
  • Gap to best practice from clinical and business perspectives
  • New management tools that weekly report and focus leadership and staff on critical goals and objectives
  • Sequenced Management Action Plan to guide and assist leadership implementing change

Outpatient Behavioral Health Clinics and Agencies

The behavioral health operations assessment for performance improvement addresses the specialized needs of outpatient mental health agencies, social service agencies, addiction treatment clinics, and specialized residential providers. When we conduct an operations assessment and develop a collaborative performance improvement plan for each organization. We are respectful of the unique mission, the specialized services, leadership and staff.  The collaborative MAP (Management Action Plan) brings real world business solutions to our clients.

Labor Productivity Improvement

Behavioral health agencies and hospitals with a behavioral health service line are experiencing high demand but lower real reimbursements. The Schafer Consulting team helps behavioral health providers re-engineer operations for optimal functioning without compromising quality of care. Our preference to obtaining improved operations is by improving staff efficiency and reducing costs first.

Quality Improvement

The Schafer Consulting team helps managers gain the skills and utilize operational reports they really need to monitor key indicators that impact cost and quality. Our use of staffing benchmarks or metrics adjusted to acuity and physical environment, and activity studies along with other key tools. These result in practical recommendations that energize managers and staff and lead to improvements in day-to-day operations.

Delivery System Innovation Readiness

The Behavioral Health Operations Assessment and Management Action Plan help hospital systems and medical centers with behavioral health service lines innovate and establish the operational and organizational foundation for successful delivery system innovations like: Integrated Behavioral Health and Primary Care, a Behavioral Health Home, Accountable Care Organization, and Care Management projects involving financial risk.

Please see our Behavioral Health Integration services page for more information.

Talk to us

Since 1993, Schafer Consulting has provided Behavioral Health operations assessments for well known hospital systems and academic medical centers throughout the United States. We look forward to speaking with you about your specific needs. Call (724) 213-0200 or contact us in confidence.