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Leveraging Lean in Healthcare: new book worth a look

This is a dense book.  I mean that as a compliment.  The authors introduce general principles of Lean but then pack in pragmatic nitty-gritty examples based on their years of experience as consultants and practitioners.  The book is an interesting read — one can open it pretty much anywhere and be engaged in the topic.  Here’s an example.  I flipped open to page 241:

  • “Starting a large number of surgical cases at the exact same time in the morning (i.e., 7:30 starts) drives crazy behaviors throughout the rest of the hospital as all the transporters are needed at the same time for an hour period to bring patients to the OR.  All the OR staff are needed at the same time to prepare for the 7:30 cases creating a tremendous amount of pull for resources at the same time.  This creates problems which are generally concealed within the overall system.” 

The authors’  approach is named BASICS (baseline, analyze, suggest recommend, implement, create, and sustain), which is drawn from principles of the plan-do-study-act Shewhart model and the plan-do-check-act Deming model. 

What I like about this book: There are entire chapters devoted to these key departments: surgery, nutrition, pharmacy, emergency, lab, inpatient floors, GI outpatient clinics, primary care clinics, and radiology.

Source: Protzman, C., Mayzell, G., and Kerpchar, J.  Leveraging Lean in Healthcare: Transforming Your Enterprise into a High Quality Patient Care Delivery System.  New York: Productivity Press, 2011.  Posted by AHA Resource Center, (312) 422-2050, rc@aha.org

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