Applying Lean in Healthcare : A Collection of International Case Studies book cover
1st Edition

Applying Lean in Healthcare
A Collection of International Case Studies

ISBN 9781439827390
Published April 21, 2010 by Productivity Press
247 Pages 75 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Typically entrenched and systemic, healthcare problems require the sort of comprehensive solutions that can only be addressed by a change in culture and a shift in thinking. Applying Lean in Healthcare: A Collection of International Case Studies demonstrates how honest appraisal, intelligent planning, and vigilant follow-up have led to dramatic improvements in a variety of healthcare settings across the world. It teaches us how innovative organizations can find sustainable solutions to seemingly intractable problems by following a path guided by Lean Thinking. Lean methods may not solve every healthcare problem, but as these cases prove, changing a culture rather than personnel results in more effective sustainable change.

Table of Contents

Introduction to Lean Healthcare
Making It Lean, Hilary Grey
Providing Rapid Access to a Vascular Surgery Outpatient Clinic, Simon Dodds
Reorganizing and Standardizing Supply Rooms across a Health System, Franciscan Health System
A Quick-Start Lean Method to Cut the Clutter and Get Your Hospital Back into Shape, Kelley Williamson
Applying Lean Thinking to the Outpatient Registration Process, Deborah Miller
Establishing a Standardized and Efficient Client Laboratory Supplies Process, Christian Buchsteiner
Improving Accommodation and Organizational Arrangements at an Outpatient Antenatal Clinic, Brendan Murphy
Improving Wait Times at a Medical Oncology Unit, Carlos F. Pinto
Minimizing the Time from "Cooking Pot to Patient", Judy-Ann Wybenga
A Journey in Lean—Bringing about Change, Improving Quality for the Patient, and Developing the Culture of a Healthcare Organization, John Coleman and Tim Franklin
Process Improvements to Reduce Operating Room Cancellations, Mimi Kokoska, Samuel B. Welch, and Teresa Stevens
The Future for Lean Healthcare, Timothy D. Hill

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Joe Aherne is CEO of the Leading Edge Group. John Whelton is the Director of North American Operations for the Leading Edge Group.


The case studies included here show how Lean thinking is being applied to preadmission testing areas, supply rooms, and outpatient clinics, as well as for delivering food to patients and reducing OR eliminating cancellations. Each case study is organized in an easy-to-follow SBAR format (ie, situation, background, assessment, recommendation), which is commonly used in health care communication. Illustrations, architectural schematics, photographs, tables, and worksheets that were used throughout each institution's Lean project are included. Each case study concludes with a helpful section on results and lessons learned from the facility's Lean thinking implementation. ... This book serves as an introduction to how Lean can be applied in health care, and it emphasizes that Lean principles can be tailored to meet the needs of corporate, manufacturing, service, food, and health care industries. … a good resource for those looking to improve patient-centered care.
Elizabeth K. Moffatt, Pinnacle Health, in AORN Journal, February 2011, Vol. 93 No. 2

For organizations looking for ideas as they embark on their Lean journey, these case studies provide wonderful examples and an opportunity to take a glimpse into the many possibilities of Lean. These case studies move beyond the theory of Lean and illustrate how Lean translates into simple actions that are capable of effecting positive change. 
–Colleen Kennedy MLIS, MHA, Leader Physician Engagement, British Columbia, Canada

Northern Health has recently embarked on its Lean Journey. The case studies provided in this book provide relevant examples that are useful and informative for organizations like ours that are implementing Lean principles and methodology. It provides examples of actual implementation strategies and solutions to change management issues in applying Lean.
–Bonnie Urquhart CGA, CHE, Director - Strategic Initiatives and Project Support, Northern Health Authority, British Columbia

Many healthcare professionals are frustrated by the disappointing quality and the waste in our healthcare systems. Patients pay for this directly or through taxation and a worrying number with their lives. This book binds together the philosophy that revolutionized the safety and quality of the motor industry with practical examples from the pioneers in healthcare. Through examples big and small, they share their learning of the problem-solving techniques and, more importantly, the fundamental change in their beliefs and behaviors that brought about change for the benefit of colleagues and patients. This is a book for those keen to join in and learn for themselves from those who are learning too. Welcome! 
–Dr Kate Silvester BSc, MBA, FRCOphth, Programme Lead for enquiry into patient flow, cost and quality, A collaboration between The Health Foundation and The National Health Service, UK

This publication is a must buy for any healthcare professional interested in delivering improvement opportunities. It highlights relevant and insightful examples from other healthcare organizations that have benefited from Lean Thinking. The book will help you and your colleagues to better understand Lean in healthcare and benefit from the experiences of those who provide patient care in an international healthcare context.
–Eamon Counihan, Quality Coordinator, Bon Secours Health System, Ireland