Lean Healthcare: Protecting Yourself in the Hospital


    USATODAY.com – Your health

    You have to scroll down to see this on USA Today's site, so here's the whole article with my commentary. The idea of taking a water gun into your hospital room with you seems funny, if not crazy! I wonder how your nurses would view that?

    Hospital ‘survival kit' will get you noticed

    Physician and author Bernie Siegel endorsed the idea that patients and their families need to watch out for their safety in hospitals (Sept. 19 column). “I tell people to take a ‘Siegel kit' to the hospital and teach them survival behavior. The kit contains a noisemaker, magic marker and water gun.

    “The noisemaker is used to avoid (an) hour of uninterrupted silence after pressing the call button. …

    [This is a type of “andon” signal that screams out that you need assistance?]

    The magic marker is used to write ‘cut here, and not this one, stupid' on your body pre-operatively.

    [This is some nice, simple, easy, cheap, and effective error proofing!]

    The water gun is used to drench those who do not respect your needs or privacy when your door is closed for meditation or family time.”

    [I can't draw a lean parallel here!]

    A registered nurse in New Orleans, Erin Griffin, pointed out that family members can't always be with patients in the hospital: “I agree that when possible you should stay with your loved one 24/7, but this is rarely possible in the ER, pre-op or recovery area, or in the ICU. The reasons vary but mainly are related to space and that families tend to disrupt or hamper the functioning of the health care area.”

    Griffin adds that, in her experience, hospital errors often are a result of understaffing: “When the patient-to-nurse ratio is high (one nurse to too many patients), mistakes ultimately happen.”

    [As with manufacturing quality, most healthcare quality errors are systemic in nature.]

    More information on this topic is available from the National Patient Safety Foundation at www.npsf.org.

    Please check out my main blog page at www.leanblog.org

    The RSS feed content you are reading is copyrighted by the author, Mark Graban.

    , , , on the author's copyright.

    What do you think? Please scroll down (or click) to post a comment. Or please share the post with your thoughts on LinkedIn – and follow me or connect with me there.

    Did you like this post? Make sure you don't miss a post or podcast — Subscribe to get notified about posts via email daily or weekly.

    Check out my latest book, The Mistakes That Make Us: Cultivating a Culture of Learning and Innovation:

    Get New Posts Sent To You

    Select list(s):
    Previous articleA Manufacturing Apprentice
    Next articleLean Healthcare: Keys to Safer Hospitals
    Mark Graban
    Mark Graban is an internationally-recognized consultant, author, and professional speaker, and podcaster with experience in healthcare, manufacturing, and startups. Mark's new book is The Mistakes That Make Us: Cultivating a Culture of Learning and Innovation. He is also the author of Measures of Success: React Less, Lead Better, Improve More, the Shingo Award-winning books Lean Hospitals and Healthcare Kaizen, and the anthology Practicing Lean. Mark is also a Senior Advisor to the technology company KaiNexus.



    Please enter your comment!
    Please enter your name here

    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.