Virginia Mason’s CEO on Health Reform


Dr. Gary Kaplan, the CEO of Virginia Mason Medical Center is now part of an effort called “Health CEOS for Health Reform“. He posted a video on YouTube talking about health reform, framing some of it in a “lean” or Toyota Production System perspective.

For more on the “Virginia Mason Production System,” click here for a quick overview.

Key points:

  • Need to stop complaining and take action
  • The path to better quality and safety is the same as the path to reduced cost
  • Our system is so full of waste (non-value-added activities), need to systematically reduce and eliminate that waste
  • Policy makers should think big and get honest about what's possible
  • Improvement is not coming from a technological arms race

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Mark Graban is an internationally-recognized consultant, author, and professional speaker who has worked in healthcare, manufacturing, and startups. His latest book is Measures of Success: React Less, Lead Better, Improve More. He is author of the Shingo Award-winning books Lean Hospitals and Healthcare Kaizen, as well as The Executive Guide to Healthcare Kaizen. He also published the anthology Practicing Lean that benefits the Louise H. Batz Patient Safety Foundation, where Mark is a board member. Mark is also a Senior Advisor to the technology company KaiNexus.

1 Comment
  1. Dale Hershfield says

    Mark, thanks for this post. In a word: leadership–critical for transformation. I think all lean practitioners should strive to be aware of C-level perspectives to provide context, align actions and provide a basis for informed dialogue and engagement.

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