Clinical healthcare providers rely on key performance indicators (KPIs) and key metrics to overcome the challenges of patient care, facility management, and clinical outcomes. Healthcare providers work in environments like hospital emergency rooms and depend on having the latest facts when they need to make a tough call. Healthcare KPIs take the guesswork out of your performance, so you can deliver the best clinical services possible.
Your operational staff is out on the floor but still needs to stay in touch with the latest clinical metrics. As staff move from one room to the next, their need for an agile KPI dashboard becomes more evident. With tablet adoption in healthcare leading the way, healthcare facilities have new, powerful options for staying wired to their data while providing front-line healthcare.
The next step is to leverage mobile technology to display clinical KPIs to everyone in your facility. With a web and mobile dashboard, your staff can stay connected to real-time KPIs whether they are at the nursing station using a PC or Mac, or moving from room to room with an iPad in hand.
To help get you started with your healthcare dashboard, we've put together 10 clinical healthcare KPI templates you can use.
Clinical Healthcare KPIs – The top 10
This KPI measures the outcome for each patient admitted based on their medical condition. With this KPI, it is imperative that you establish what the normal values are for each condition. For example, of 1000 patients admitted with congestive heart failure, x amount recover within 10 days and are discharged, y amount are hospitalized for more than 10 days before being discharged, and z amount pass away. With these norms as your baseline, you can drill down and see where your behaviour influenced positive/negative outcomes. Benefit: Know acceptable norms for clinical outcomes and take action to improve patient outcomes. Audience: Decision-makers, healthcare providers Calculation: Condition X (Outcome A, Outcome B, Outcome, etc) / 1000 patients Example: Congestive heart failure ( 300 / 1000 hospitalized for less than 10 days, 500 / 1000 hospitalized for more than 10 days, 150 / 1000 second incident within 30 days, 50 / 1000 mortality within 48 hours of arrival)
Number of patients in ER.
This KPI measures the current service level in your emergency room. Of all the KPIs on this list, this metric is the one that absolutely needs to be calculated in real-time and updated at regularly, such as every 15 minutes. Beyond the need to know exactly what is going on in your ER, this KPI can be used as the basis for a range of KPIs to help your ER deliver better service and patient outcomes. For example, including information about each patient, such as the severity of their condition, can make assigning the right staff to each patient straightforward. Benefit: Decision-makers, healthcare providers Audience: Executives, Banks and Lenders. Calculation: A headcount (valuate each patient as 1), and then split patients into different categories based on severity. Example: 5 patients waiting (non-severe), 7 patients admitted awaiting attendee (moderate-severity), 2 patients being attended to (severe).
ER waiting times.
This KPI measures the average amount of time each patient has to wait in your ER. This KPI generates a lot of public interest and rightly so. ER wait times are one of the most important indicators of your hospital's performance and patient satisfaction. Wait times are calculated over a specific time period to account for any anomalies in the data. This and the previous KPI provide a starting point for monitoring ER performance. Benefit: Know how long patients are waiting to be admitted in your ER. Audience: Decision-makers, healthcare providers, general public Calculation: (Time of check-in - Time of admittance / x days Example: 90 min wait / past 30 days
Lab turnaround time.
This KPI measures the ability of your lab to process lab results. This is the base KPI for any lab and is the most obvious way to measure patient satisfaction. To calculate this KPI, you will create a breakdown for each type of test processed in your lab, since some tests take longer than others to complete. Your task for this KPI is determining what the acceptable norms are for each type of test, and using that as your base comparison for the turnaround metric. Benefit: Know how your lab is performing compared to acceptable norms. Audience: Decision-makers, healthcare providers Calculation: Date test submitted - Date test results disclosed to physician (per test type)
Example: Test type 1 = 5 day turnaround; Test type 2 = 3 day turnaround
Hospital bed occupancy rate.
This KPI measures how effectively you are using hospital facilities over a specified period of time. As with any of the KPIs on this list, occupancy rate can fluctuate greatly from one period to the next and from one hospital to another. Your goal with this KPI is to set up a value as an acceptable norm so you can determine why rates are high or low. This KPI is a bit of a Goldilocks scenario, where too few beds can impact patient satisfaction and outcomes, and too many beds available points to an inefficient use of resources. Benefit: Know how effective you are at managing hospital resources. Audience: Decision-makers Calculation: (Total beds (x days) / inpatient days of care (x days) ) * 100 = Rate% / x days Example: 200 Beds (90days) / 170 inpatient (90days) = .85 or 85% / past 90 days
Average length of stay.
This KPI measures how long, on average, patients stay in your hospital. This metric can vary widely based on what type of facility you are operating (long term care vs short term) and what type of medical conditions are involved. Once you've gathered your data, you can concentrate on investigating why your number is what it is and showing it in this KPI. Is it influenced by hospital acquired infections, or by excellent healthcare service? Calculating this KPI is straightforward, but it is important to give each patient a base-value of 1 to account for all visits, even if they are not overnight. Benefit: Know how long patients stay at your facility and find out why that is. Audience: Decision-maker, healthcare providers Calculation: (Date of admission - Date of discharge)
Example: 4 days is the average length of stay
Number of hospital acquired infections.
This KPI tracks the amount of hospital acquired infections (HAI) per 1000 patients. This is a challenging metric to track simply because there are so many factors involved in determining where and how someone is infected. As with most of the other KPIs in this list, properly formulating this KPI requires a keen understanding of context and knowledge of hospital reporting and operating procedures. That being said, a high HAI needs to be addressed quickly, since this is a public safety concern. Benefit: Know if people are getting infected from visiting your facility, and prevent as many cases as possible. Audience: Decision-makers, health-care providers, general public
Calculation: Infection 1 = x amount of cases / 1000 cases Example: C. Difficile 3.2 / 1000
Surgical site infection rate.
This KPI measures the percentage of patients who develop post-operative infections at the surgical site. Unlike many of the KPIs on this list, this one is relatively straightforward to check since the infection will be actively monitored by healthcare providers. The infection rate metric can also be coupled with information about the procedure, such as the surgical team involved, and the type of procedure performed. If the infection rate is abnormally high, then figuring out if it is caused by human error is vital. Benefit: Know if infection rates are abnormal and be able to drill down to find out why. Audience: Decision-makers, surgical teams Calculation: Number of surgeries (organized by type) / number of site infections Example: 1000 hip replacements / 5 site infections = .5% site infection rate
Inpatient mortality rate. This KPI measures the percentage of patients who pass away while under your care. Unfortunately, you can only control this metric so much because - as is inevitable in a hospital - sometimes there is nothing you can do for a patient. With this in mind, you should calculate this metric with an understanding of the underlying medical conditions involved in each case. This way you can set up benchmarks to consistently measure this rate. So, if the mortality rate for a certain condition suddenly goes up, you can start getting to the root of the problem. Benefit: Know what your rate is for each medical condition so you can spot abnormalities in the data. Audience: Decision-makers, healthcare providers Calculation: Number of fatalities per 100 instances of a medical condition Example: Congestive heart failure 2.6 / 100
This KPI measures the quality of your service from your patients' perspective. This is a subjective measure that can take into account a wide range of services, not just clinical practices. However, since the focus of this list is clinical KPIs, you should be concerned about satisfaction with staff, cleanliness of facilities, and clinical outcomes. It is worth noting that the majority of the data backing this KPI will come from outpatient surveys.
Benefit: Know how your patients feel about your facility, and take steps to increase satisfaction. Audience: Decision-makers, healthcare providers Calculation: Assuming a survey with 1-5 ranking for each question, use this calculation: (sum of all points awarded for clinical section / maximum possible points for clinical section) Example: 75 / 125 = 60% satisfaction