Evaluating the Productive Efficiency of Jordanian Public Hospitals

  •  Wasim Sultan    
  •  José Crispim    


Jordan is committed to providing healthcare services for more than a million refugees coming from bordering countries in the last five years and face increasing demand for the services of public hospitals. Their efficiency is a key success factor to manage the unique and complex context effectively. This research investigated the technical and scale efficiency of the Jordanian Public Hospitals. The study applied constant and variable returns to scale input-oriented DEA models to rank hospitals and allocate the factors associated with inefficient operations. The work tested 27 general public hospitals from 2010 to 2014, in total, 135 observations were examined with respect to four input-measures and three output-measures. The output-measures characterize three functional areas; inpatient, outpatient, and ambulance and emergency departments. Further, decomposing the technical efficiency allowed considering for scale effects. Findings revealed that 25 observations out of 135 ones were efficient and constructed the efficient frontier. Eight hospitals in 2014 were on the frontier, but weakly efficient and all suffered slacks. Targets and reference sets were identified to guide improvements. Hospitals were sorted into five performance patterns; promising, declining, stable good, stable poor, and unstable. The number of physicians and outpatient services recorded high slacks. On average, 2013 scored the best performance. Scale analysis shows that a capacity of 160 beds is an optimal production size in Jordan. Inefficient and weakly efficient hospitals can target areas of opportunities for performance improvements. The efficiency of Public hospitals in Jordan was not investigated since 1992. The study was limited to public hospitals from 2010 to 2014.

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