Affiliated Organization

University of St. Gallen, Switzerland


Extensive networking led to a high division of labor among the business partners and to an optimization of cost structures in most sectors of western economies. In competitive parts of the health care markets, the first signs of a similar development are beginning to crystallize. As a consequence, networkability, that is the ability to link up with other players (e.g. specialized health service providers, home care institutions) on the basis of commonly agreed standards for the joint provisioning of patient-centered and cost-efficient health services, will emerge to a key concept for future health service delivery. It is therefore the aim of this contribution to give a first overview of potential enablers for the networkability of health care organizations. In doing so, the discussion of the subject matter is carried out from an interdisciplinary point of view, basing on constituent knowledge of the fields of health services research, organization theory and information systems, and is further substantiated with initial empirical findings from the Swiss health care market.