Podcast #123 – Lean & Medical Home at Group Health

MP3 File (run time 23:56)

Clare Trescott MD

This episode is a discussion with two leaders from Group Health Cooperative, a consumer-governed, nonprofit health care system based in Seattle, Washington. My guests are  Claire Trescott, MD, Primary Care Medical Director, and Alicia Eng, Vice President of Primary Care. We will be talking about their use of Lean principles in the design and management of their “Medical Home” approach to primary care and wellness. You can read a PDF of a Health Affairs article  that describes the benefits to patients and caregivers.

This podcast was produced in conjunction with the Healthcare Value Network  as a continuation of their previous podcast series.

For a link to this episode, refer people to  www.leanblog.org/123. For a 2007 interview with Group Health leaders, visit www.leanblog.org/23.

About Medical Home (from Group Health):

The Group Health Research Institute conducted a two-year study of the Factoria Medical Home Pilot. Results of that study were published in the May 2010 issue of the journal Health Affairs.

The study compared the medical home prototype at Factoria to care at Group Health’s other medical centers, and found that:

  • The quality of care was higher at Factoria; patients reported better experiences and clinicians said they felt less “burned out.”
  • Patients had 29 percent fewer visits to the emergency room and 6 percent fewer hospitalizations, resulting in a net savings of $10 per patient per month.
  • Patients with chronic conditions managed them more successfully, and followed medical orders better with the aid of everyone on the medical home team.
  • For every dollar Group Health invested, mostly to boost staffing, it recouped $1.50.

For earlier episodes, visit the  main Podcast page, which includes information on how to subscribe via RSS or via Apple iTunes.

You can use the player (use the VCR-type controls) at the top of the post to listen to a streaming version of the podcast (or click here for the streaming audio and RSS subscription). The streaming link is faster for one-time listening (hardly any delay to start listening). Or you can use the download link to put it on your iPod or other MP3 player.

If you have feedback on the podcast, or any questions for me or my guests, you can email me at [email protected] or you can call and leave a voicemail by calling the “Lean Line” at (817) 776-LEAN (817-776-5326) or contact me via Skype id “mgraban”. Please give your location and your first name. Any comments (email or voicemail) might be used in follow ups to the podcast.


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Now Available – The updated, expanded, and revised 3rd Edition of Mark Graban’s Shingo Research Award-Winning Book Lean Hospitals: Improving Quality, Patient Safety, and Employee Engagement. You can buy the book today, including signed copies from the author.

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Mark Graban's passion is creating a better, safer, more cost effective healthcare system for patients and better workplaces for all. Mark is a consultant, author, and speaker in the "Lean healthcare" methodology. He is author of the Shingo Award-winning books Lean Hospitals and Healthcare Kaizen, as well as The Executive Guide to Healthcare Kaizen. His most recent project is an eBook titled Practicing Lean that benefits the Louise H. Batz Patient Safety Foundation, where Mark is a board member. Mark is also the VP of Improvement & Innovation Services for the technology company KaiNexus.

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