Measuring the efficiencies of visiting nurse service agencies using data envelopment analysis

Yuki Kuwahara, Satoko Nagata, Atsuko Taguchi, Takashi Naruse, Hiroyuki Kawaguchi, Sachiyo Murashima

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


This study develops a measure of the efficiency of visiting nurse (VN) agencies in Japan, examining the issues related to the measurement of efficiency, and identifying the characteristics that influence efficiency. We have employed a data envelopment analysis to measure the efficiency of 108 VN agencies, using the numbers of 5 types of staff as the input variables and the numbers of 3 types of visits as the output variables. The median efficiency scores of the VN agencies were found to be 0.80 and 1.00 according to the constant returns to scale (CRS) and variable returns to scale (VRS) models, respectively, and the median scale efficiency score was 0.95. This study supports using both the CRS and VRS models to measure the scale efficiency of VN service agencies. We also found that relatively efficient VN agencies filled at least 30 % of staff positions with experienced workers, and so concluded that this characteristic has a direct influence on the length of visits.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)228-235
Number of pages8
JournalHealth Care Management Science
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2013 Sept 1


  • Data envelopment analysis (DEA)
  • Efficiency
  • Nurse visiting
  • Visiting nurse service

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Health Professions(all)


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