Monday, November 18, 2013

Get Certified in Lean Six Sigma to improve health care processes

As more physicians and nurses get involved in quality improvement projects, there is a growing demand for clinicians who are certified in Lean and Six Sigma. Technically, Lean and Six Sigma are different methods, but people often combine these terms and refer to them as "Lean Six Sigma" or "Lean and Six Sigma."
  • The Lean process was developed by the Toyota manufacturing production system and focuses primarily on eliminating waste and achieving greater efficiency. 
  • Six Sigma originated at Motorola as a way to improve processes and reduce defects by identifying the root causes of problems to develop effective solutions.
You can achieve Green Belt or Black Belt certification from a number of different organizations and this may open up job or consulting opportunities around quality improvement, process improvement, waste reduction, improving patient safety, and more. There are different ways to get certified, but in general you have to receive training, six for an exam, and demonstrate proficiency by working on projects where you apply the Lean and Six Sigma methodologies to make improvements.

In health care, the combined processes of Lean and Six Sigma can improve workflow, process efficiency, and patient care. There are a variety of systematic tools and ways to apply Lean Six Sigma principles in health care.

To learn more, research ASQ (American Society for Quality) and IASSC (International Association for Six Sigma Certification) for more information about Lean and Six Sigma.

Here are some books to consider:

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