Templates for Continuous Process Improvement


Lean Healthcare

Lean healthcare tools and teachings for a lean hospital or medical facility

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Lean Healthcare Tools

Some of the most popular six sigma and lean tools used most frequently for lean healthcare include:

Value Stream Map
Value Stream Map
A3 Report
A3 Problem Solving
Stick Figure Illustrator
A3 Stick Figure Illustrator
Process Analysis
Process Analysis
Muda Observation
Waste Observation
Takt Time Calculator
Takt Time Calculator
Root Cause Analysis
Root Cause Analysis
Layout Diagram
Layout Diagram
Training ppt
Lean Training PowerPoint
Scatter Plot
Scatter Plot
SQDC Safety
SQDC Boards
Milestone Chart
Milestone Chart
Change Management
Change Management
Decision Matrix
Decision Matrix
Pareto Chart
Pareto Chart
One Good Idea
One Good Idea
Control Chart
Control Chart
Check Sheet
Check Sheet
Pitch Chart
Pitch Chart
Leader Standard Work
Lean Management System
Lean Assessment
Lean Assessment
5S Red Tag Log
5S Work Place Organization
Standard Work Audit
Standard Work
Work Instructions template
Work Instructions
TWI Job Breakdown
TWI Job Breakdown
Functional Flowchart
Swim Lane Functional Flowchart
Flow Chart template
Tool Matrix
Tool Matrix
(to find the right tool)

Commonalities between

Lean Healthcare and Lean Manufacturing

Lean Healthcare Tools are the same

Download free trial
Tool Selection Matrix

Most Lean Healthcare Tools are the same

Just use the Service column on the Systems2win Tool Selection Matrix
to filter for the Excel templates that are most commonly used
in a Lean Service environment.

Lean Management is the same

Lean management systems are the same

The system for visual management is the same

(even though the specific visual controls vary greatly even within any given organization)

Definitions and teachings are the same

95% of Lean healthcare definitions and teachings can be applied to both
a Lean Manufacturing and a Lean Office environment without any modification

IF (and this is the big stumbling block)...
IF Lean authors, teachers, and practitioners use terminology that does not assume
that the thing being transformed is a physical inventory item

A lean healthcare value stream is just as likely as a manufacturer to employ lean concepts

such as kanbans, heijunka, jidoka, kaizen, and the other new words for process improvement that happen to be Japanese words because Henry Ford didn't think of them first.

Many or most Lean teachings come from the Toyota Production System —
which is why it is common for Lean practitioners to assume that the thing being transformed is a physical inventory item (like a car). But it doesn't have to be.

Literally 99% of Lean concepts apply to ANY industry.

Value Stream Mapping is the same

The purposes of value stream management are the same:

Depict processes in ways that make the deadly types of waste easy to see

Monitor and continuously improve key success metrics

Value stream mapping symbols and concepts are the same for a bakery or a bank

(and you can easily add custom shapes to your Systems2win value stream map template)

The process for value stream mapping is the same for home-builder, a hotel, or a hospital

See step-by-step instructions in the Help page on our free trial value stream mapping template

Unlike Lean Office...

Lean Healthcare and Lean Manufacturing both focus on
the central middle segment of the value stream.

Differences between

Lean Healthcare and Lean Manufacturing

  1. If the process you are optimizing does not deal with inventory, then wherever you see the word "inventory" — substitute either the word "patient", "lab report", or the phrase "the thing being transformed"
  2. In addition to inventory... buffer and safety resources are more likely to also include: Training Matrix
    1. Overtime
    2. Cross-training and departmental borrowing
    3. Temporaries
    4. Outsourcing
    5. Pre-trained workers available as needed (seasonal, retirees...)
    6. Pre-negotiated availability of extra rooms/beds
    7. Contingency plans
    8. Automation
  1. Value stream mapping symbols and concepts are the same, except for a few unique shapes, such as an ambulance instead of a truck, or a gurney instead of a push cart.
lean healthcare value stream mapping symbols
  1. Lean Healthcare providers are more likely to use
    Stick Figure drawings
    for A3 problem solving.
Stick figure drawing tool for lean healthcare
  1. Change Management tools are not just nice, but essential,
    in any workplace where there are strong hierarchical barriers to the free flow of communication
    (such as often exists between doctors and staff)
Change Management

Lean in Healthcare "gotcha's"

  1. Don't invent your own vocabulary

    Just because you sometimes need to substitute the words "patient" or "the thing being transformed" when you see the word "inventory" doesn't mean that it is a good idea to start inventing your own (non-Japanese) words for everything else you learn about Lean.

    You will make it a LOT easier on your people if you teach them the same Lean definitions that are used in almost every Lean book that has ever been printed — instead of trying to "translate" for them by inventing your own vocabulary.

    Standard lean tools can still incorporate Evidence Based Outcomes.
    The standard Process Analysis template can be used to monitor any results — including Hospital Core Measures.

  2. Don't over-customize your templates too soon

    Just because these Excel templates are so easy to personalize doesn't mean you should. The more that your people learn about how to apply the right lean six sigma tools and methods, the less different you will find that you really are. If you find yourself wanting to personalize a template, first consider that maybe you might be trying to use the wrong tool for the problem you're trying to solve.
    Use the Tool Matrix to find the right tool. Or call us for help.

  3. Watch out for the Common Pitfalls

    that everyone else needs to watch for, too.











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cookie cutter

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animation - Substitute Phrases

Our patients
don't like to be processed,
so we call it "Touch Time".

Oh... so THAT'S how you use Systems2win Substitute Phrases

You say we can replace
ANY row or column header
with our own phrase?

And our phrase will be automatically found and transferred to our new master template each time we upgrade?

Wow. Maybe our industry
isn't so different after all...



















Why re-invent?

Why re-invent?