Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Lean stories at Hadassah Mt. Scopus

Jim Womack and I changed venues in our Lean mission today, moving from the main campus of the Hadassah Medical Organization in Ein Kerem, Jerusalem, to the smaller (300-bed) community academic hospital at Mt. Scopus.  This was the original Hadassah hospital, abandoned in 1948 after several dozen staff members, including the director-general, were massacred on their way to work.  It re-opened in the 1960s, but after planning and construction for the new large hospital had occurred.  It serves a mixed Jewish and Arab clientele, and its staff also reflects that mixture.  The building is lovely -- old-fashioned and warm -- as are the people working in it.

We started with a quick gemba walk.  Here Jim is seen with emergency department chief Ruth Stalnikovitz and hospital director-general Osnat Levztion-Korach -- historical note, formerly known as just a regular doctor!)  Then it was off to a general assembly with staff about the nature of the Lean philosophy.  Jim pointed out that, properly executed, it can lead to better patient outcomes, a better patient experience, a better staff experience, and not coincidentally, lower costs.  The last is true because many activities that lead to bad outcomes, and poor patient and staff experience, add cost.

I then provided examples from BIDMC, including a dramatic improvement in the patient experience in the orthopaedic clinic and improved viability of blood samples from the emergency department.  I added some thoughts about the importance of transparency in an organization that wishes to hold itself accountable to the standard of care to which it aspires.

Jim and I both left with the feeling that the Mt. Scopus hospital has tremendous potential to benefit from the Lean philosophy and hoping that the leadership and staff of the hospital will choose to embrace it.

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