At the time hospitals were constantly in a struggle with the battle to reduce the possibility of spreading infectious disease. The American culture had gone into a prevention frenzy to control the outbreak of infectious diseases. We adopted the following tools and processes to help reduce the likelihood of contracting an infectious disease. Some of the tools that were used are:
Even with prevention practices set in place, hospitals still had a staggering 5% infection rate, one of the most critical areas to reduce the infection rate is the hospital operating room. While a human body is open and exposed in an operating room, the chance of infection increases greatly.
The improvement team therefore started implementing Lean Conversion techniques to four connecting operating rooms, or commonly referred to as a POD. With the assistance of Lean Sensei Curtis Walker of GDC Total Business Solutions, tools and systems were put in place to drastically reduce exposure to infectious disease.
Lean Conversion has many tools that can be utilized across various industries. The healthcare industry has recently realized it is time for improvement! For years the industry has been struggling to provide customer service at an economical price. With the current situation, hospitals are finding it necessary to compete amongst each other, which means that the institutions must improve their current practices to provide superior, cost- effective care for patients. The industry has turned to Lean Conversion and Six- Sigma to bring continuous improvement tools and activities to their organization.
To create Workplace Organization by using the foundation of Lean tools, 5S. This technique was applied to one pod (4 operating rooms). The 5S standards used are:
Over 20 weeks, teams of 3-5 members including a RN and a Pod Aide held training meetings (maximum of 4 hours). These team members, working with other staff members, performed assignments lasting no more than 60 minutes per team member. The Lean tools (in addition to 5 S) used were:
GDC's Curtis Walker, working with the hospital teams, produced very impressive results by implementing Workplace Organization (5S) and inventory management tools. The results were sustainable, continuous and respected by the hospital management team.
Today’s Health industry continues to face problems such as these as well as others. The change in health care coverage along with the growth in new diseases, makes it critical that hospitals begin to increase preventative methods and improve their processes.