Social Return on Investment: A New Approach to Understanding and Advocating for Value in Healthcare

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Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To determine whether the methodology of social return on investment (SROI) could be a way in which the value of a healthcare-related program (children's cancer camp) could be captured, evaluated, and communicated.

BACKGROUND

The value of healthcare goes beyond what can be captured in financial terms; however, this is the most common type of value that is measured. The SROI methodology accounts for a broader concept of value by measuring social, environmental, and economic outcomes and uses monetary values to represent them.

METHODS

The steps/stages of an SROI analysis were applied to the context of a children's camp for this article.

RESULTS

Applying the SROI methodology to this healthcare-related program was feasible and provided insight and understanding related to the impacts of this program.

CONCLUSIONS

Because of SROI's flexibility, it is a tool that has great potential in a healthcare environment and for leaders to evaluate programmatic return on investment.

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