Doylestown Health

Strategic Planning in a Dynamic Market


Helping a community hospital develop a long-term strategic plan to remain independent and an indispensable component of the regional system of care.

the challenge

Doylestown Health is a healthcare network in Doylestown, Pennsylvania, serving a population of approximately 350,000 in the northern suburbs of Philadelphia. The hospital includes a 238-bed community hospital, physician practices, and an array of post-acute care services. The arrival of a new CEO created an opportunity to develop a clear understanding of the organization's current state, articulate a direction for the future, and identify strategies for moving forward.

the process

ECG partnered with the board and physician and executive leadership in a planning process that was shared and strategic. We interviewed more than 90 members of the medical staff, conducted a comprehensive assessment of payer and provider market dynamics, and evaluated the pace of the market's transition from volume to value. Through a highly participatory process, we defined the characteristics of a proactive health system and built consensus regarding the rationale for transformation.

the outcome

The strategic planning process established three goals – transform the delivery system, manage a population, and leverage relationships. ECG helped develop a tactical plan that engaged the organization in the execution of the strategic plan, specifying roles and responsibilities, timelines, and initial priorities. We also guided efforts to craft mission, vision, and values statements and articulate the organization's strategic positioning.

ECG continues to serve as a strategic advisor for leadership as implementation progresses. The pace of change in the market has accelerated, and within 1 year, all four "wild cards" identified during the strategic planning process have begun to affect the local and regional market. To assist in responding to these market changes, we assessed the organization's readiness for value-based care delivery and worked with leadership to recalibrate the implementation plan.

I really appreciate the insight, analytics, and facilitation skills the ECG team provided us in developing a strategic direction for Doylestown Health. They were particularly effective in working with the board, medical staff, and management in developing a consensus for both the strategic plan and an implementation roadmap.

James Brexler, President and Chief Executive Officer, Doylestown Health