But take a look anyway, if you have an interest in process improvement in hospitals. This is a collection of my best posts on this topic.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Returning to Gemba

You may recall that I discussed the Lean training program being taken by our senior management group. A second session was held this week, and we returned as a group to Gemba, the place where work happens, where value is created for consumers. Today's visit was to the pharmacy. SVP Jayne Sheehan, seen above in her "bunny suit", and I observed how things are done in the clean room.

We watched Rena Lithotomes (left), a trainee, and Rosmara Harvey (right), a pharmacist, as they carried out the incredibly precise and important work of preparing dosages of a wide variety of drugs used in clinical settings.

Later in the classroom setting, we compared notes to refine our observational skills and ability to see opportunities for reductions of muda, mura, and muri in our work areas. These concepts have often been used in other industries, but not so much yet in the health care industry. Probably the best example is Virginia Mason Medical Center in Seattle, where CEO Gary Kaplan has made this the hallmark of his administration for several years. We are earlier on the path to adoption of this philosophy in our hospital, merging it into our BIDMC SPIRIT program in a more systematic way over the coming months.

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