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Portfolio analysis is a business management tool that can assist health care managers to develop new organizational strategies. The application of portfolio analysis to US hospital settings has been frequently reported. In Europe however, the application of this technique has received little attention, especially concerning public hospitals. Therefore, this paper examines the peculiarities of portfolio analysis and its applicability to the strategic management of European public hospitals. The analysis is based on a pilot application of a multi-factor portfolio analysis in a Dutch university hospital. The nature of portfolio analysis and the steps in a multi-factor portfolio analysis are reviewed along with the characteristics of the research setting. Based on these data, a multi-factor portfolio model is developed and operationalized. The portfolio model is applied in a pilot investigation to analyze the market attractiveness and hospital strengths with regard to the provision of three orthopedic services: knee surgery, hip surgery, and arthroscopy. The pilot portfolio analysis is discussed to draw conclusions about potential barriers to the overall adoption of portfolio analysis in the management of a public hospital.

Original publication




Journal article


Int J Health Plann Manage

Publication Date





43 - 68


Catchment Area, Health, Economic Competition, Hospitals, Public, Netherlands, Pilot Projects, Planning Techniques