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Tag: Virginia Mason

AME Spring Conference: Art Byrne

AME Spring Conference: Art Byrne

Like yesterday’s “live blog” post about the Autoliv talk, I also wrote this post as Art Byrne talked, but held it for publication today. He is author of the book The Lean Turnaround: How Business Leaders Use Lean Principles to Create Value and Transform Their Company  and was my guest for episode #158 of my […]

Lean Healthcare is About Quality – a Falsehood, a Wise CEO, and JAMA Data

Lean Healthcare is About Quality – a Falsehood, a Wise CEO, and JAMA Data

I  always get annoyed when people spread the false dichotomy of “Lean is about efficiency and Six Sigma is for quality.” Replace the word “efficiency” with “speed” or “flow” and it’s still wrong. Here is an example of this falsehood in a book from a major publisher… this author refers to Lean addressing the first […]

The Best Time to Start Kaizen is Today, Don’t Wait Until You’re “Ready”

The Best Time to Start Kaizen is Today, Don’t Wait Until You’re “Ready”

I’ve been talking to a lot of healthcare organizations about Kaizen and continuous improvement. There are many organizations embracing the methods that Joe Swartz and I wrote about in Healthcare Kaizen. I think there’s some momentum building out there for making sure that Lean isn’t only a bunch of projects — instead, having everybody engaged […]

By February 11, 2013 15 Comments Read More →
UK: Nurses Struggle to Get Their Work Done; Dissatisfaction Soars, Quality in Jeopardy?

UK: Nurses Struggle to Get Their Work Done; Dissatisfaction Soars, Quality in Jeopardy?

I recently saw this headline in the London Evening Standard: “Nurses struggle to ‘get the job done’ due to staff shortages and lack of time on 12 hour shifts.” The article starts with jumping to solutions (needing/wanting more staff), but the problem statement is what we should focus on – and it’s an important one: […]

By February 7, 2013 6 Comments Read More →
The IOM Asks “What’s Possible in Healthcare?”

The IOM Asks “What’s Possible in Healthcare?”

Last year, the Institute of Medicine released its latest report titled, “Best Care at Lower Cost: The Path to Continuously Learning Health Care in America.” The report endorsed Lean as one strategy for improving the problems in our health care systems around the world. From the full report (available as a free PDF download, with […]

By January 27, 2013 1 Comments Read More →
Dr. Gary Kaplan’s Piece on Lean for the Institute of Medicine

Dr. Gary Kaplan’s Piece on Lean for the Institute of Medicine

Here is a commentary written by Gary S. Kaplan, MD, the CEO of Virginia Mason Medical Center: “The Lean Approach to Health Care: Safety, Quality, and Cost.” More than a decade ago, Kaplan and the team at VMMC realized they had to focus “on three things: 1) the safety of patients while in our care; […]

By November 28, 2012 4 Comments Read More →
Hospital Workers, Flu Shots & Standardized Work

Hospital Workers, Flu Shots & Standardized Work

While working in different environments and different industries, I’ve seen many work requirements that were deemed “non-negotiable” by management – and rightly so.  For example, wearing safety glasses in a factory or wearing gloves when handling specimens in a hospital lab. Generally speaking, “standardized work” (the way we do things) should be written by the […]

By November 26, 2012 47 Comments Read More →

Lean Healthcare & Virginia Mason Medical Center on the PBS News Hour

Yesterday’s PBS News Hour had a piece on the use of Lean and the Toyota Production System at Seattle’s Virginia Mason Medical Center: About 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 […]

By October 25, 2012 3 Comments Read More →
“Lean Management” Debated in the Washington Gubernatorial Race

“Lean Management” Debated in the Washington Gubernatorial Race

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, with the help of Michael George, tried injecting talk of so-called “Lean Six Sigma” into the 2012 presidential race, but I think it was received as a bit of a novelty topic that illustrated the relative quirkiness of Gingrich. The state of Washington has been working to apply Lean principles […]

By September 18, 2012 6 Comments Read More →
Two Blog Posts About “Healthcare Kaizen”

Two Blog Posts About “Healthcare Kaizen”

Here are two blog posts that my co-author, Joe Swartz, and I were very happy to see about our book Healthcare Kaizen: Engaging Front-Line Staff in Sustainable Continuous Improvements: From the Virginia Mason Medical Center Blog:  “Could this new book help drive your lean journey?” And Patrick Anderson’s Lean in Alaska Blog:  his review post. […]

By September 13, 2012 0 Comments Read More →

Labor Day Reflections for a Safer Week (and Years) Ahead

I didn’t have a post yesterday because it was the Labor Day holiday here in the U.S. While I’m not a “worker,” in the sense of an hourly employee or union worker anymore, I still enjoyed the day off with family. Managers and consultants and white-collar professionals are certainly hard working… but the spirit of […]

By September 4, 2012 5 Comments Read More →
Paul O’Neill Talks ThedaCare, Lean Healthcare on CNBC

Paul O’Neill Talks ThedaCare, Lean Healthcare on CNBC

Here is about five minutes of video of Paul O’Neill (former CEO of Alcoa and former Treasury Secretary) talking about the power of Lean healthcare on CNBC. O’Neill talks about leading organizations like Virginia Mason, Intermountain, ThedaCare, and others who have PROVEN that Lean methods (“or the Toyota Production System or Deming or whatever flavor […]

By August 22, 2012 3 Comments Read More →
“Quality Digest Live” Video Archive & Follow Up Post on Standardized Work

“Quality Digest Live” Video Archive & Follow Up Post on Standardized Work

Thanks to the guys at Quality Digest… I was on their weekly video show “Quality Digest Live” last week, talking about “Healthcare Kaizen.” You can view the archived video here (click on the July 6 episode if that doesn’t play automatically). One question was about the acceptance of “standardized work” by healthcare professionals. I was […]

Dr. Gary Kaplan, CEO of Virginia Mason, on Healthcare Morale

Dr. Gary Kaplan, CEO of Virginia Mason, on Healthcare Morale

It might only be free (brief registration required) for a limited time, but there’s a great video of Dr. Kaplan (with his slides) talking about Lean and the challenges facing healthcare (content no longer available for free). In his introductory comments, Dr. Kaplan talks about the importance of morale (or the scale of the problem […]

Virginia Mason’s Improvement Cited in NYT Editorial; Their New Blog

Virginia Mason’s Improvement Cited in NYT Editorial; Their New Blog

Virginia Mason Medical Center, a world-renowned leader in the application of Lean principles in healthcare, has a new blog: Virginia Mason Blog. They name blogs the way I do, simple and direct :-) One of their first posts highlights a Sunday New York Times editorial that talks about some good news stories of healthcare organizations […]

Interested in a Possible Lean Healthcare Study Trip to Japan?

Interested in a Possible Lean Healthcare Study Trip to Japan?

This is all somewhat preliminary, but I’ve been talking to the folks at the Kaizen Institute  about helping organize a study trip to Japan, aimed at Lean Healthcare professionals. The trip might take place in the second half of 2012 sometime, but there is some flexibility around this, as Kaizen Institute would be creating a […]

Thoughts on National Patient Safety Awareness Week

Thoughts on National Patient Safety Awareness Week

March 4 to 10 has been “National Patient Safety Awareness Week.” I’m certainly in favor of patient safety and have worked tirelessly, as have others, to try to improve patient safety from its abysmal starting point (see the statistics here). I tend to roll my eyes a bit at these special weeks, though. Patient safety […]

Kaizen on the Boeing 737 Line

Kaizen on the Boeing 737 Line

There was a nice article in the Wall Street Journal this week about the Boeing 737 and some of their Lean and Kaizen (continuous improvement) work: “Boeing Teams Speed Up 737 Output — Jet Maker’s Innovation Crews Search for Ways to Streamline Production as Aircraft Demand Soars.” Boeing needs to increase production by more than […]

By February 10, 2012 2 Comments Read More →