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J Hosp Med. 2013 Mar;8(3):148-53. doi: 10.1002/jhm.2006. Epub 2013 Jan 18.

Development and implementation of a balanced scorecard in an academic hospitalist group.

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Division of Hospital Medicine, University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, CA 94143, USA.



Academic hospitalist groups (AHGs) are often expected to excel in multiple domains: quality improvement, patient safety, education, research, administration, and clinical care. To be successful, AHGs must develop strategies to balance their energies, resources, and performance. The balanced scorecard (BSC) is a strategic management system that enables organizations to translate their mission and vision into specific objectives and metrics across multiple domains. To date, no hospitalist group has reported on BSC implementation. We set out to develop a BSC as part of a strategic planning initiative.


Based on a needs assessment of the University of California, San Francisco, Division of Hospital Medicine, mission and vision statements were developed. We engaged representative faculty to develop strategic objectives and determine performance metrics across 4 BSC perspectives.


There were 41 metrics identified, and 16 were chosen for the initial BSC. It allowed us to achieve several goals: 1) present a broad view of performance, 2) create transparency and accountability, 3) communicate goals and engage faculty, and 4) ensure we use data to guide strategic decisions. Several lessons were learned, including the need to build faculty consensus, establish metrics with reliable measureable data, and the power of the BSC to drive goals across the division.


We successfully developed and implemented a BSC in an AHG as part of a strategic planning initiative. The BSC has been instrumental in allowing us to achieve balanced success in multiple domains. Academic groups should consider employing the BSC as it allows for a data-driven strategic planning and assessment process.

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