Healthcare institutions spend millions every year on consultants to help analyze and improve processes. Managers at North Shore-LIJ Health System can avoid the added expense of consultants by attending courses at the Center for Learning and Innovation to learn how to implement various operational performance solutions.
In many instances, refining the process results in savings, brings in added revenue, improves customer and employee satisfaction, and adds a whole host of other benefits to the way an organization performs.
Improvement Sciences is a resource to facility and system leadership when confronted with operational performance issues. Managers can send individuals and teams to CLI to learn the OPS methodologies and return to their sites for implementation. These courses teach the methodology, techniques and concepts necessary to implement in the worksite.
CLI uses Six Sigma quality methodology to improve processes, manage costs, and increase employee satisfaction. The Six Sigma methodology, which has proven effective in all industries, enables healthcare providers to measure how many errors or defects occur in the existing processes. During a Six Sigma project, a systematic approach is utilized to reduce or eliminate the causes for the defects, getting as close to “zero defects” as possible. These benefits are eventually seen by patients in terms of lower costs and enhanced services.
This program takes its name from the concept of eliminating fat. Lean analyzes flow and delay time for each activity in a process, and separates value-added steps, activities that yield value, from non-value-added steps. The program is deployed through an approach called kaizen, a Japanese term meaning continuous improvement. Employees work together and learn by doing as they apply structured improvement methods and monitor results on a targeted process, ensuring that the value=added steps are performed efficiently.
Employees in ALEAD participate in a capstone project at the end of the program. They are placed into teams and each team works through a process improvement that aligns with the health system’s strategic goals. Capstone projects are intended to be intensive, active learning projects requiring considerable effort in the planning and implementation of solutions.