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Tag: Patient Safety

Are Today’s Hospitals Too Much Like “The Old GM?”

Are Today’s Hospitals Too Much Like “The Old GM?”

As a former GM employee and a GM customer, I’m really fascinated by the reaction of the public, the media, and Congress to the recalls and scandal over ignition switch problems in some GM small cars from recent years. The defect or design flaw is believed to have caused between 13 and 300 deaths (depending […]

Good Questions, But With Some Misunderstandings about Lean Healthcare

Good Questions, But With Some Misunderstandings about Lean Healthcare

In 2009, I wrote about a nurses’ union in New Brunswick that supported Lean because they realized this methodology could help reduce waiting times and improve working conditions. It’s win/win. Yet, as part of the recent politicized Lean healthcare brew-ha-ha in Saskatchewan (read more here), the Saskatchewan Union of Nurses (SUN) has been critical of the provinces’ […]

Lean Thinking: We Don’t Blame Individuals for Systemic Errors

Lean Thinking: We Don’t Blame Individuals for Systemic Errors

I saw this video last night on Paul Levy’s blog and it’s important enough that I want to share it here with a few additional thoughts. In the Lean methodology, our mindset is that we respect people as individuals, respecting their human nature, and this means we appreciate that we are fallible and make mistakes. […]

More on Lean in Saskatchewan

More on Lean in Saskatchewan

Since the healthcare improvement work I do is apolitical and non-partisan, I’m generally not one to butt into the political affairs of Canada or other countries. But, when I hear complaints about Lean or when it’s being called a “scam” and a “cult” by some in Saskatchewan (read here), my ears perked up and I […]

Some People Who Are Making a Difference for Patient Safety

Some People Who Are Making a Difference for Patient Safety

This week is National Patient Safety Awareness Week. See my thoughts on this from 2012. Every week should be National Patient Safety IMPROVEMENT Week, as the problem is that dire. But, it’s great to try to bring to light the risks of our modern healthcare system in the U.S. and other countries. I often point […]

Happy Talk Headlines vs. Sad Realities to Fix in Healthcare

Happy Talk Headlines vs. Sad Realities to Fix in Healthcare

As National Patient Safety Awareness Week continues, thanks go to Graham Foster for sending me this article from the UK: Most NHS staff deem care ‘fit for their own family’. Well, that’s a positive, happy sounding headline. “Most” think the care is good enough to recommend. But, after reading the reality expressed in the article, the […]

Podcast #195 – Steve Montague, Lean + TeamSTEPPS for Patient Safety

Podcast #195 – Steve Montague, Lean + TeamSTEPPS for Patient Safety

Please upgrade your browser MP3 File (run time 38:47) Joining me for episode #195 is my friend Steve Montague from LifeWings. Steve and I met initially through our shared interest in Lean and, like Ron Pereira, we discovered we both lived in Keller, Texas (I’ve since moved to San Antonio). Steve is a retired Navy […]

Medical Errors: The Names Change, but the Headlines Are Sadly the Same

Medical Errors: The Names Change, but the Headlines Are Sadly the Same

When I started blogging here in 2005, I was still about six months away from my transition from “lean manufacturing” to “lean healthcare.” It was mind boggling and disturbing to me to learn about the healthcare quality and patient safety crisis (something I had been oblivious to being healthy and not having a family member […]

By January 29, 2014 5 Comments Read More →
Healthcare Leaders Need to Actively Manage the System

Healthcare Leaders Need to Actively Manage the System

Thanks to my friends at the Lean Enterprise Institute for hosting a new article of mine on their Lean Post blog. “The Question All Healthcare Leaders Should be Asking Themselves” What is that question? Click to find out. And please also check out information about the online “Key Concepts of Lean in Healthcare” class I’m […]

By January 16, 2014 0 Comments Read More →
Talking about Lean Healthcare in Winnipeg – #SDEC13 – and Visiting St. Boniface General Hospital

Talking about Lean Healthcare in Winnipeg – #SDEC13 – and Visiting St. Boniface General Hospital

Thanks to the organizing sponsor Protegra and other sponsors, including my friends at LeanKit, for having me give a keynote talk about the Software Development and Evolution Conference (SDEC) 2013 Conference in Winnipeg yesterday (Storify summary here). I always enjoy being around a group of developers (it dredges up memories of my childhood coding on […]

By October 22, 2013 3 Comments Read More →
Hospitals Prioritize Spending on Pretty Buildings over Safety?

Hospitals Prioritize Spending on Pretty Buildings over Safety?

Here’s an excellent commentary by  Ashish K. Jha, M.D., M.P.H, a professor at the Harvard School of Public Health: “In The Race For ‘Fanciest Hospital In Town,’ Patient Safety Loses Out.” Dr. Jha argues that hospitals glad spend millions of dollars on superficial pretty features that might boost patient satisfaction scores… partly because there are […]

By October 16, 2013 8 Comments Read More →
Some Mature & Wise High School Students on Preventable Medical Errors

Some Mature & Wise High School Students on Preventable Medical Errors

Near home in San Antonio, I had a chance to volunteer last Friday, speaking for an hour to a group of high school juniors and seniors who are part of the health professions  program  within in the Alamo Academies program that prepares students for careers in areas including aerospace and manufacturing (companies like Boeing, Lockheed […]

By October 15, 2013 4 Comments Read More →
SF General Adopts Lean, Faces a Big Test with a “Never Event”

SF General Adopts Lean, Faces a Big Test with a “Never Event”

They just started a year ago (better late than never?), but San Francisco General Hospital had its Lean efforts highlighted in the San Francisco Chronicle last week: “S.F. General following ‘Toyota Way’ to efficiency.” On the very same day, another headline flew past about a patient who had wandered off and gotten lost in the […]

By October 14, 2013 0 Comments Read More →
Too Many Patients Harmed, Too Few Leaders Committed to Real Change?

Too Many Patients Harmed, Too Few Leaders Committed to Real Change?

I recently received two emails that are worth sharing, in anonymous form here. One was from somebody I know who just quit a Lean role at a major academic medical center after a few years there, as he’s looking to join an organization that has a “deeper commitment to profound change” (spoken like a reader […]

How Often Does This Get Repeated? CMS and the Underpants Gnomes

How Often Does This Get Repeated? CMS and the Underpants Gnomes

I’ve recently heard of a scenario in healthcare that I suspect is pretty common, or at least it’s not the first time I’ve heard of this scenario. There have been stories in the news, but without naming names and without any inside information, here is what is reported to have happened in one of these […]

By September 5, 2013 9 Comments Read More →
What I’m Reading 8/29/13: Forcing Happiness, Saving $$ By Not Using Your Health Insurance, and More

What I’m Reading 8/29/13: Forcing Happiness, Saving $$ By Not Using Your Health Insurance, and More

As we move into the Labor Day weekend, I need to close some browser tabs that are full of things that I was maybe going to write about, but don’t merit a full post. So, the latest in my “What I’m Reading” series: “How to Disarm a Nasty Co-Worker: Use a Smile“ (WSJ):  I think […]

By August 29, 2013 1 Comments Read More →
Gemba Wine: A Lean Geek Visits Wineries, Part 3

Gemba Wine: A Lean Geek Visits Wineries, Part 3

Following up on my previous posts (here and here) on a recent visit to the Northern California Wine Country, I’m going to share a few more ideas and thoughts based on what I saw during the trip (when I wasn’t tasting wine with my wife). What’s the Right Pricing? As in any industry, a winery […]

By August 28, 2013 2 Comments Read More →
Video: Influencing Hand Hygiene Behaviors

Video: Influencing Hand Hygiene Behaviors

A friend shared this fun video about how to influence hand washing behavior amongst a group of 12 kids. As the introduction points out, improper hand hygiene can be deadly in hospital settings. In the scenario, the kids are given a task to complete, with the promise of cupcakes at the end as a reward: […]

By August 15, 2013 5 Comments Read More →