Oct 30, 2009

Quote of the Day

'Everything in this world is based on Performance.'

Glad to know Wommack would be interested in Lean. Things are more interesting when you find multi-discipline applications.

Oct 21, 2009

Food for Thought

I was talking to my father about Lean a few days ago. He got me thinking about 2 things:
  • How to do more with what I currently have?
  • And how to do exactly the same with less?

The interesting thing is that you could apply these 2 simple questions to absolutely anything.

Como hacer mas con lo que tengo, como hacer lo mismo con menos?

Oct 14, 2009

Lean - the 7 wastes

I am a little disappointed. Let's keep it clear. There are only 7 wastes in the Lean manufacturing process. No more. There are those out there claiming poetic license and adding their own 'waste' to the list... pluhh-ease!

In case you wonder, they are:
1. Overproduction
2. Waiting
3. Transporting
4. Inappropriate Processing
5. Unnecessary Inventory
6. Unnecessary Motion
7. Defects

If you are still wondering what this is all about, start with The Goal, a great book on Lean in fiction-style.

... and if you want to know more about Lean specifically for Healthcare, I was suggested to read The Toyota Way to Healthcare Excellence: Increase Efficiency and Quality with Lean, by John Black.

Still in my to-do list... I'm hoping to get to it soon.

Oct 8, 2009

The Hospital of the Future

Writing about the future patient rooms, got me thinking about the bigger picture, the future of healthcare design and the bigger task in hand. Designing a hospital can be once-in-a-lifetime-opportunity, and many times, it can be obsolete before even completing its life cycle. Architects and planners have to design for:

1. flexibility,

2. adaptability,

3. expansion,

4. safety,

5. productivity and

6. sustainability.

...And if that was not enough, designers should also consider:

7. the patient-centered care trends,

8. branding, and

9. the future of the healthcare administration.

let me know of you can think of anything else.

Oct 7, 2009

Patient Room Design

There is so much to say about patient rooms. My general approach is to see it from the patient's perspective. It is suggested that room doors should be located “patient right”, where the door is to the right-hand side of the patient bed. Since around 90% of the population is right-handed, I cant' object to that. Another worth-mentioning best practice is to locate the toilet room door on the same side of the head wall, so patient has the option to lean on to the wall in case mobility assistance is needed.

Patient Room of the Future

In patient rooms, where flexibility is the key factor, the question seems to be: what will the adaptable patient room of the future be like? You must consider healthcare trends, characteristics of future patients, resource limitations, rising costs, and technology. However, about the technology of the future, keep in mind that the rule of thumb is: do not project more than 7 years ahead. Otherwise, you can end up with something like the image below, the humongous 2004 computer of the future, decades ahead of its time....

In a healthcare world that is heavily gravitating towards patient-centered services, and where technology moves at exponential speeds, this seems like a tricky task for our healthcare planners. I'm confident the best trends are just around the corner.

Handed versus Mirrored Rooms

Traditionally, mirrored rooms have been preferred as their construction allows for shared head walls and plumbing walls. So the thought was that sharing wet walls should mean savings in construction costs.

On the other hand, same-handed rooms seem to be favorable for medical staff -although no tangible evidence is available yet. With every room being identical, medical staff would be able to access the exact same layout, reducing the possibility of medical errors. What's more, it is suggested that same-handed rooms can project lower costs. Architects can document same-handed items, contractors can build same-handed rooms faster, and health care organizations would only acquire/replace/track same-handed room equipment and furniture.

My preference, same-handed layouts. What say you?