The Challenge of Healthcare and Hospital Businesses

There is no industry that is immune to the cost and quality pressures of healthcare. An aging and often unhealthy population, plus reduction in public resources is requiring greater healthcare efficiency and hospital productivity. Patient-focused and back-office processes must become leaner and more consistent. Not only is this challenge felt by hospitals and healthcare-service companies, it is felt by society. We all need healthcare systems that are streamlined, more accurate and easier for providers and patients.

How Supply Velocity Helps Hospital and Healthcare Clients

Supply Velocity teaches and uses a variety of tools to help improve healthcare and hospital efficiency.

  • Lean Process Improvement
  • 5S Visual Standardization
  • Inventory Optimization
  • Supplier-Selection
  • Six Sigma Quality
  • Performance Scorecards

While on the surface it may sound odd, hospitals and healthcare providers must process “patient services” with similar operational concerns as other service and manufacturing businesses. Processing speed, quality, cost and resource management are just as important and can be dealt with in very similar ways. Lean process improvement tools attack direct patient care and information flow (back-office) processes for waste.

These processes such as scheduling and billing can impact people’s perception of the quality of care.

These processes such as scheduling and billing can impact people’s perception of the quality of care. Process flow and value stream mapping are used to identify and eliminate steps that are not value added to patients and providers.

5S Visual Standardization ensures the right instruments, information and supplies are put in the hands of the providers who are working directly with patients. It may seem trivial to ensure that a patient-care room has the right gloves, in sufficient quantity, clearly labeled, but it can slow down care and frustrate providers and patients.

Hospitals run one of the most complicated supply chains of any industry. Multiple suppliers for the same commodity and numerous distribution echelons can make it challenging to keep the right inventory, in the right quantity at the right place. Supply Velocity’s inventory optimization tools helps prevent stock-outs of important items and over-stock of less important supplies.

Supplier selection is an overlooked aspect of managing a hospital supply chain. Supply Velocity has developed a supplier selection optimization tool that accounts for the very complicated tier-discount structure manufacturers put in place to ensure you minimize your spend within a category.

In no other industry is quality as important as healthcare. Six Sigma tools can be used to reduce variation in care, improving consistency and the speed of service in life-threatening events. We deeply analyze the steps in the process and historical data to find root causes of variation and unacceptable outcomes. This analysis is turned into sustainable improvement steps that are taught, standardized and measured.

A simple, balanced performance scorecard of a back-office function and patient care department can focus administration and providers on quality and effectiveness. We balance performance metrics based on operational efficiency, employee satisfaction, patient care, innovation and financial success.

If you are wondering how to improve healthcare efficiency and quality, providing patient-centered service at reduced overall cost, Supply Velocity, with hundreds of clients and 600+ Lean Six Sigma and Supply Chain projects, is a proven partner.