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Getting to the Root Cause on ABC’s Grey’s Anatomy

by Mark Graban on November 3, 2012 · 3 comments

greys anatomy ver 2 150x150 Getting to the Root Cause on ABCs Greys Anatomy leanLast week, my wife was watching ABC’s show “Grey’s Anatomy,” as she always does. Again, as she often does, she’ll pause it for me when there’s a scene related to patient safety, so I can watch.

In this scene, below, “McDreamy” (Patrick Dempsey) and his colleagues are talking to lawyers about a plane crash that killed some other colleagues (this is a medical soap opera, mind you). McDreamy goes on a bit of a McPreachy speech about how hospitals analyze errors to prevent future occurrences.

My wife found it a bit ironic that a doctor was lecturing somebody in aviation about how to improve safety and prevent errors. I agreed.  Learn how aviation is actually teaching healthcare about safety — via “crew resource management” and other culture changes…

Other Grey’s Anatomy moments I’ve blogged about:


Mark Graban 2011 Smaller Getting to the Root Cause on ABCs Greys Anatomy leanAbout LeanBlog.org: Mark Graban is a consultant, author, and speaker in the “lean healthcare” methodology. Mark is author of the Shingo Award-winning books Lean Hospitals and Healthcare Kaizen, as well as the new Executive Guide to Healthcare Kaizen. Mark is also the VP of Innovation and Improvement Services for KaiNexus.


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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Andy Wagner November 3, 2012 at 12:11 pm

Aviation safety owes a lot to medicine. Pre-flight checklists, crew resource management, and the blame-free culture–investigating to find cause and preventative action instead of suing each other– all came from—- wait a minute… what did McDreamy say?

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2 Mark Graban
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November 3, 2012 at 12:28 pm

Exactly. Grey’s got it backwards.

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3 Andy Wagner November 3, 2012 at 12:25 pm

Seriously, though, Mark, this would be the perfect opportunity for Sully Sullenberger to guest star and teach the producers and the public more about how health care quality can be improved.

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