Developing a preliminary model of healthcare matching as a service. Usefulness and barriers

Lars Nordgren, Catharina Wingner Leifland, Agneta Planander


Purpose. The Swedish healthcare system is dealing with long waiting times for patients and an undeveloped degree of coordinating capacity to patients. Against this background, the purpose was to discuss and develop a preliminary conceptual healthcare matching model as well as discuss the usefulness and barriers of healthcare matching.

Methodology. There was collaboration between academia and practitioners in the Skåne region during the period of 2013-2016. Studies of policy documents, scientific articles, reports, meetings with strategists and attendance at a so-called coordination meeting served as a basis for gathering empirical data. Theoretically, the study draws on the concepts of matching, coordination and cooperation.

Findings. A successful healthcare matching requires an advanced matching in order to balance capacity to the needs of the patients. Matching accentuates the two-way interaction, i.e. co-creation between patients and providers. Both healthcare providers and patients could benefit from using matching. In summary, this implies the usefulness of healthcare matching and the development of the healthcare matching model.

Several barriers of political and economic aspects must be paid attention to. The barrier element concerns the legislation that includes minor incentives to cooperate across county council boundaries. The underlying tendencies concerning medico-technological developments and the organisational specialisation of healthcare, economies of scale and bureaucracy, are partially conflicting notions. The strong professional identity in healthcare also constitutes obstacles concerning matching.

Practical implications. In order to succeed in the notion of healthcare matching, there must be an understanding of mutual needs and cooperation by the stakeholders involved.  

Originality/Value. The first study of healthcare matching in the Swedish healthcare system.  


accessibility; barriers; coordination; cooperation; healthcare matching; service

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