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Optimal incentive mechanism for dual referral based on the analytic hierarchy process
  1. Guanghe Lei
  1. School of Humanities and Management, Guangdong Medical College, Dongguan, China 523808
  1. Corresponding author: Guanghe Lei, School of Humanities and Management, Guangdong Medical College, Dongguan, China 523808, E-mail: 258002183{at}


Objective The optimal incentive mechanism for dual referral is discussed to provide a decision-making foundation for the implementation of a dual referral incentive mechanism.

Methods We established a multi-hierarchy evaluation model for a dual referral incentive mechanism by analyzing the main schemes and measures used to stimulate dual referral. The weight values of every scheme or measure were determined and consistency tests were carried out using expert judgement methods and an analytic hierarchy process.

Results The weight values of patients, community physicians, and hospital physicians as the incentive objects were 0.2583, 0.1047, and 0.6370, respectively, and the weight values of medical insurance-based reward and punishment, community medical center construction, referral platform, and publicity and communication as incentive schemes were 0.4950, 0.3103, 0.1164, and 0.0783, respectively.

Conclusion The main incentive object in the implementation of a dual referral is the hospital physician, followed by the patient. The most workable incentive scheme is “medical insurance-based reward and punishment,” followed by “community medical center construction.”

  • Dual referral
  • Incentive mechanism
  • Analytic hierarchy process
  • Incentive object
  • Incentive scheme

This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 Unported License (CC BY-NC 4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited. See

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