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Tag: Healthcare

Safety is “always our top priority,” except when it isn’t… in football and hospitals

Safety is “always our top priority,” except when it isn’t… in football and hospitals

Although I’m a proud alum of Northwestern University, a former marching band member, and an ardent follower of our football team (as I’ve written about before), I grew up as a fan of the Michigan Wolverines and have many friends who are alumni. After watching NU shock Penn State on Saturday, I flipped over to […]

By September 29, 2014 5 Comments Read More →
The Fallacy of Firing People to Fix Patient Safety

The Fallacy of Firing People to Fix Patient Safety

In a Lean culture, the mindset is that “problems are treasure” or “problems are gold.” By honestly identifying problems, we can solve problems and prevent them from occurring in the future. Problems in healthcare can include medication errors, laboratory specimen mixups, and other problems that can harm or kill patients. The stakes are high. Traditional […]

By September 25, 2014 7 Comments Read More →
“Lean Coffee” Topics for September 2014

“Lean Coffee” Topics for September 2014

As I blogged about last month, “Lean Coffee” is becoming a quarterly event for healthcare professionals here in San Antonio. We held a two-hour discussion this morning, with students, leaders, and Lean practitioners from a university MHA program and some local healthcare organizations. There’s now a landing page that’s the permanent home for Lean Coffee, […]

By September 24, 2014 0 Comments Read More →
“Healthy Debate” About Lean in Healthcare & Emergency Departments

“Healthy Debate” About Lean in Healthcare & Emergency Departments

I was recently interviewed by one of the reporters who put together this web article in Canada: “From the factory floor to the emergency department: Hospitals explore Lean method” The article highlights Lean success stories and it also raises some interesting challenges and data that question the approach. My friends at St. Boniface General Hospital […]

By September 22, 2014 5 Comments Read More →
Lean is Not About Cutting Costs; 2 Data Point Comparisons in EDs & the NFL

Lean is Not About Cutting Costs; 2 Data Point Comparisons in EDs & the NFL

Two pet peeves of mine are hearing people say things like “Lean is all about reducing waste” and or “Lean is all about cost cutting” (and thankfully others are also trying to dispel that myth). Another pet peeve is people drawing conclusions off of two data points, but we’ll come back to that later in […]

By September 17, 2014 2 Comments Read More →
Reflections on Almost 10 Years in Lean Healthcare

Reflections on Almost 10 Years in Lean Healthcare

I often get asked, “How did you get into healthcare?” I was working on a chapter for a Lean healthcare compilation book that’s being published in Holland and I wrote the following material that wasn’t the right fit for that chapter, but I wanted to share below: It has now been just about ten years […]

By September 15, 2014 6 Comments Read More →
Lean Healthcare Success in Minnesota – And One Off Base Op-Ed

Lean Healthcare Success in Minnesota – And One Off Base Op-Ed

Here’s an article that summarizes the pocket of Lean healthcare activity in and around Winona and LaCrosse, Minnesota: “Waste reduction: Area health systems embrace lean practice“ One hospital mentioned is Winona Health. You can listen to my earlier podcast with their CEO, Rachelle Schultz. I’m glad she’s one of the CEOs who realizes that Lean […]

By September 8, 2014 0 Comments Read More →
Mark Graban Interviewed by HealthcareTechTalk.net

Mark Graban Interviewed by HealthcareTechTalk.net

I was recently interviewed for the Healthcare Tech Talk podcast, talking about Lean healthcare, Kaizen, and how IT professionals can get involved in these pursuits within a hospital or health system. I appreciate them having me on their show. My episode: Episode 23- Healthcare technology professionals can stop asking. Yes Lean transformation includes you! It’s […]

By September 5, 2014 2 Comments Read More →
Turning “Waste” Into a Clever Acronym

Turning “Waste” Into a Clever Acronym

I wrote about Kaizen the other day on LinkedIn and the first comment was from Dr. Leke Agbejule, BPharm, MSc, PharmD, from South Florida: Very well said. As a Lean Six Sigma practitioner I live & consult by the “Kaizen” philosophy. I like the mantra of Patrick Davidson which says “Eliminate Waste & Create Flow” My definition of […]

By September 4, 2014 0 Comments Read More →
Managing With Red/Green Charts is Like Driving By Looking at the Rear-View Mirror

Managing With Red/Green Charts is Like Driving By Looking at the Rear-View Mirror

There’s an expression that was used by Dr. W. Edwards Deming, and also by Dr. Don Wheeler, that says managing through metrics (and comparisons to targets) is like driving by looking in the rear-view mirror. Deming said: Taking action on the basis of results without theory of knowledge, without theory of variation, without knowledge about […]

By September 2, 2014 16 Comments Read More →
It’s Easy to See Why Labor Would be Upset with This Hospital CEO

It’s Easy to See Why Labor Would be Upset with This Hospital CEO

Monday is Labor Day, a holiday here in the United States. Some nursing unions support Lean in healthcare, while others are in opposition. My stance is been that the unions should love Lean (since it  improves the workplace for their members), but they are right to criticize practices like layoffs and other things that aren’t really […]

By August 29, 2014 3 Comments Read More →
Why “More Nurses” Isn’t the Best Way to Solve What Ails Healthcare

Why “More Nurses” Isn’t the Best Way to Solve What Ails Healthcare

There are certainly many serious problems in healthcare. Let’s look at nursing, in particular. It’s a rewarding job, but it’s far more frustrating for nurses than it needs to be. Nurses often don’t have enough time in the day (or in a given hour) to do all of their work the right way in the […]

Teaching Up in the Organization?

Teaching Up in the Organization?

People often talk about the need for senior leadership support for Lean. If we’re going to really transform our culture, workplace, and performance, “quality starts in the boardroom,” as Dr. Deming said. Lean is not about “fixing” the employees — it’s about changing the way we think and lead at all levels. If executives and […]

By August 20, 2014 4 Comments Read More →
What They’re Saying Now about Lean Healthcare in Saskatchewan

What They’re Saying Now about Lean Healthcare in Saskatchewan

There have been plenty of headlines and updates since I first blogged about the controversy over Lean healthcare in the Canadian province of Saskatchewan (see my previous posts here). From my outside perspective, there are some good things happening. I admire their adoption of a “patient safety alert system” and a blame-free culture (see Saskatoon […]

Read What This Hospital CEO Says on His Blog About Lean and Kaizen

Read What This Hospital CEO Says on His Blog About Lean and Kaizen

Hospital CEOs are busy people, to say the least, but a big part of their leadership role includes communication with employees, physicians, and the community. That’s one reason I am always excited to see CEOs reach out directly to people via blogging. The most recent of those is Eric Dickson, MD, MHCM, the President and CEO of UMass […]

By August 13, 2014 1 Comments Read More →
Why Every Patient Deserves the Care & Caution that Surrounds the American Ebola Patients

Why Every Patient Deserves the Care & Caution that Surrounds the American Ebola Patients

Today’s post a link to my article written for the LinkedIn “Influencers” series: Why Every Patient Deserves the Care & Caution that Surrounds the American Ebola Patients Part of my article: “But, it makes me think… if hospitals CAN be extra cautious and make sure people are following protocols in situations like this, why aren’t […]

This Date in Lean Blog History: August 6

This Date in Lean Blog History: August 6

My blog will turn 10 years old in February, 2015. You’re probably either thinking, “Wow, that’s awesome!” or “Get a life, dude.” :-) Here’s a look back at some of the posts from August 6 in past years… what was I writing about? 2013: Podcast #183 – Scott Sambucci, Lean Startup Ideas for Sales 2012: Dr. Donald […]

What I’m Reading: Diner Muda, No Blame at Etsy, Toyota Treats Cancer Faster, etc.

What I’m Reading: Diner Muda, No Blame at Etsy, Toyota Treats Cancer Faster, etc.

In case you missed it, see Saturday’s post: “Why Toyota is Eliminating the Andon Cord from its Factories.” As I occasionally do, today’s post is one where I’m going to close out some open browser tabs and post links to articles that I’ve been reading that are worth sharing (as I often do on Twitter), […]