- Impact of 5 years of Lean Six Sigma in a university medical center
- Quality Management in Health Care
- Volume | Issue number
- 21 | 4
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Economics and Business (FEB)
- Amsterdam School of Economics Research Institute (ASE-RI)
Lean Six Sigma (LSS) is an originally industry-based methodology for cost reduction and quality improvement. In more recent years, LSS was introduced in health care as well. This article describes the experiences of the University Medical Center Groningen, the second largest hospital in the Netherlands, with LSS. It was introduced in 2007 to create the financial possibility to develop innovations. In this article, we describe how LSS was introduced, and how it developed in the following years. We zoom in at the traumatology department, where all main processes have been analyzed and improved. An evaluation after 5 years shows that LSS helped indeed reducing cost and improving quality. Moreover, it aided the transition of the organization from purely problem oriented to more process oriented, which in turn is helpful in eliminating waste and finding solutions for difficult problems. A major benefit of the program is that own employees are trained to become project leaders for improvement. Several people from the primary process were thus stimulated and equipped to become role models for continuous improvement.
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