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Program Information

Lean Tools and Methods

D Rangaraj

K Chan

S Boddu

T Pawlicki

S Dieterich

D Rangaraj1*, K Chan2*, S Boddu3*, T Pawlicki4*, S Dieterich5*, (1) Baylor Scott and White Health, Temple, TX, (2) Princess Margaret Hospital, Toronto, (3) ,Temple, TX, (4) UC San Diego, La Jolla, CA, (5) UC Davis Medical Center, Sacramento, CA


TH-C-9A-1 Thursday 10:15AM - 12:15PM Room: 9A

Lean thinking has revolutionized the manufacturing industry. Toyota has pioneered and leveraged this aspect of Lean thinking. Application of Lean thinking and Lean Six Sigma techniques into Healthcare and in particular in Radiation Oncology has its merits and challenges. To improve quality, safety and patient satisfaction with available resources or reducing cost in terms of time, staff and resources is demands of today's healthcare. Radiation oncology treatment involves many processes and steps, identifying and removing the non-value added steps in a process can significantly improve the efficiency. Real projects undertaken in radiation oncology department in cutting down the procedure time for MRI guided brachytherapy to 40% less using lean thinking will be narrated. Simple Lean tools and techniques such as Gemba walk, visual control, daily huddles, standard work, value stream mapping, error-proofing, etc. can be applied with existing resources and how that improved the operation in a Radiation Oncology department's two year experience will be discussed. Lean thinking focuses on identifying and solving the root-cause of a problem by asking "Why" and not "Who" and this requires a culture change of no blame. Role of leadership in building lean culture, employee empowerment and trains and develops lean thinkers will be presented. Why Lean initiatives fail and how to implement lean successfully in your clinic will be discussed.

Learning Objectives:
1. Concepts of lean management or lean thinking.
2. Lean tools and techniques applied in Radiation Oncology.
3. Implement no blame culture and focus on system and processes.
4. Leadership role in implementing lean culture.
5. Challenges for Lean thinking in healthcare


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