Lean Enterprise Institute Publishes Perfecting Patient Journeys for Lean Healthcare Leaders

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A how-to guide for using lean management to improve patient safety, quality, and satisfaction while building the problem-solving skills of healthcare managers and staff.

Perfecting Patient Journeys is a guide for lean leaders in healthcare organizations.

Perfecting Patient Journeys is a how-to guide to lean healthcare.

Perfecting Patient Journeys provides a step-wise approach that is practical and clear and will jump-start efforts of your process improvement teams

It would be safe to say that we have a healthcare crisis in this country and that The Affordable Care Act will not be the final answer regarding how to solve it. The crisis is the result of a disturbing trifecta: rising costs, not enough accountability and transparency, and lousy results. The U.S. spends more on healthcare than any other industrialized nation and yet data shows that tens of thousands of people die every year in hospitals because of preventable medical errors. The U.S. ranks 39th in the world for infant mortality and 36th for life expectancy.

The good news is there are forward-thinking individuals and organizations scrambling to solve the problem while it can still be solved. Perfecting Patient Journeys (Lean Enterprise Institute, February 11, 2013) lays out in great detail how to apply lean manufacturing principles to the delivery of healthcare, and the remarkable results they are seeing by doing so.

Lean Hospitals
Over the past eight years, the authors of this book have helped healthcare organizations learn how to make real and sustainable change using the value-stream improvement method. Implementing lean thinking has helped healthcare providers develop an adaptive, problem-solving culture with stunning results:

  • Reduced annual staff turnover by 20%
  • Average length of stay in a large hospital emergency department was reduced by 30%
  • The number of patients who left without being seen dropped by 60% in the same hospital
  • Customer (patient) satisfaction increased by 73%
  • Operating room changeover time was reduced, which increased the number of surgical procedures performed by 20%

Perfecting Patient Journeys is the guide for leaders of healthcare organizations who want to implement lean thinking in their organizations with all of the improvement in the quality and safety that it brings to the delivery of healthcare. Readers will learn how to identify and select a problem in the performance of a specific value stream, define a project scope, and create a shared understanding of what’s occurring in the value stream. Readers will also learn to develop a shared vision of an improved future for healthcare, and hopefully work together to make that vision a reality.

The method described here does not rely on huge training budgets or teams of consultants. It focuses on solving real organizational problems, and at the end of the day doing what healthcare organizations and those who labor there aspire to do every day: provide safe, effective, efficient, and timely patient care.

Perfecting Patient Journeys

  • By Judy Worth, Tom Shuker, Beau Keyte, Karl Ohaus, Jim Luckman, David Verble, Kirk Paluska, and Todd Nickel
  • Published February 11, 2013, by Lean Enterprise Institute, Inc.
  • ISBN: 978-1-934109-36-6
  • 161 pages, hardcover, illustrated
  • $70.00; Discounts on purchases of 10+
  • Media: Chet Marchwinski, cmarchwinski@lean.org, 617-871-2930
  • Buy Perfecting Patient Journeys and download excerpts at http://www.lean.org/BookStore/ProductDetails.cfm?SelectedProductId=355&ProductCategoryId=9

Praise from Healthcare Leaders
Here’s a sample of what healthcare leaders are saying about Perfecting Patient Journeys:

"Given the worldwide problem of declining value in healthcare, I cannot think of a more timely and practical resource for pursuing perfect healthcare delivery." - John Toussaint, MD, author of On the Mend and Potent Medicine, CEO emeritus of ThedaCare and CEO of the ThedaCare Center for Healthcare Value

"Perfecting Patient Journeys is the perfect field guide for leading self-directed improvement teams in healthcare.” - Roger Chen, Corporate Director of Performance Excellence, Martin Health Systems

“Perfecting Patient Journeys provides a step-wise approach that is practical and clear and will jump-start efforts of your process improvement teams." - Alice Lee, Vice President of Business Transformation, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center

"Perfecting Patient Journeys is a practical guide to anyone conducting a value-stream improvement project in healthcare.” - Jeanne Kin, Special Projects Manager, University of Michigan Medical School

About the Lean Enterprise Institute
Lean Enterprise Institute, Inc., was founded in 1997 by management expert James P. Womack, PhD, as a nonprofit research, education, publishing, and conference company with a mission to advance lean thinking around the world. We teach courses, hold management seminars, write and publish books and workbooks, and organize public and private conferences. We use the surplus revenues from these activities to conduct research projects and support other lean initiatives such as the Lean Education Academic Network, the Lean Global Network and the Healthcare Value Network. Visit LEI at http://www.lean.org for more information.

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Chet Marchwinski
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