Lean stroke project speeds U-M stroke care
Neeraj Chaudhary, MBBS, assistant professor, radiology; Joseph Gemmete, M.D., associate professor, radiology; and B. Gregory Thompson, Jr. M.D., professor, neurological surgery
The University of Michigan Stroke Program is taking a tip from the automotive industry by using "Lean" Thinking - a quality improvement philosophy that removes waste from processes and attacks problems at its roots. Since the creation of the Lean Stroke Project Team one year ago, U-M has finely honed its stroke arrival process to benefit referring physicians, U-M faculty and health care staff and, most importantly, stroke patients.
"Stroke is a complex disease process requiring collaboration from multiple surgical/medical specialties," says Aditya S. Pandey, M.D., assistant professor of neurosurgery.
Neurology, Neurosurgery, Neuroradiology, Cardiology, ICU, Anesthesia, Rehabilitation, Physical Therapy - every component of the hospital that works with stroke patients, and even outside entities such as emergency medical services - were brought into the process.
The Lean Project
Stroke Team meets
statistics that are recorded in real-time to monitor
The team identified several key issues including
the need for:
The Lean Stroke Project Team's goals were:
Results of the many improvements of the team so far:
"Our infrastructure for stroke care has become more efficient in allowing early diagnosis and treatment while being able to offer a comprehensive spectrum of medical, neurointerventional and neurosurgical treatment alternatives that simply are not available in most stroke centers," Dr. Pandey says.
The team used Lean tools and processes to revamp the stroke arrival process. For example, team members created a map of the entire arrival process, beginning with the onset of symptoms all the way to the patient being assigned to the appropriate bed.
"We're treating stroke more like trauma," says William J. Meurer, M.D., assistant professor of emergency medicine and neurology. "We're identifying the patients quickly and treating them quickly."
"Quality of care is most important to us," says Lewis B. Morgenstern, M.D., director of the Stroke Program and professor of neurology. "We work extremely close together to provide the highest quality care for our patients."
The University of Michigan is accredited as a Primary Stroke Center by the Joint Commission and participates in the American Stroke Association Get With the Guidelines Quality Initiative. And UMHS is one of only two stroke programs in the state of Michigan to receive the American Heart Association's Gold Plus designation for quality of care.
In 2013, the Joint Commission will add stroke core measures to its guidelines for hospitals. And, as lean coach Sheri Moore says, "The University of Michigan Health System will be more than ready."FOR MORE INFORMATION:
For clinic appointments to the U-M Stroke
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