Access Kaizen

The access kaizen program is a hands-on, team-based approach that works to improve patient access, clinician and team workflows, and clinic throughput in ambulatory care settings.

Our professionals can help your organization develop a just-in-time (JIT) access system that’s capable of meeting demand with available capacity and creating flow—from the time a patient requests a service until that need is fulfilled in a high quality, satisfying manner.

Access Kaizen Workshops

In a series of seven workshops that serve as kaizen (continuous improvement) sessions, your team will learn to redesign your access systems and build an improved structure that management can easily assess in real time. The new JIT access system then becomes a foundation for sustainment and continuous improvement.

Unlike most programs designed to improve access, our access kaizen program fully aligns with lean production and management in health care, including the use of daily management systems and visibility.

Workshop Focus

Workshops are spaced six to eight weeks apart, providing time to apply what you’ve learned and follow through on improvement action plans with interim coaching support. Workshops address the following topics:

  • Demand. Measure, analyze, and modify demand; match demand to capacity; understand backlog; and eliminate delays.
  • Capacity. Measure capacity and understand capacity loss; simplify appointment types; manage and optimize capacity; and balance supply and demand.
  • Activity and backlog. Measure and analyze activity as an element of a JIT access system so you can reduce backlogs and more readily meet patient demand.
  • Lean management for access. Address the cultural elements of sustaining access improvements by applying lean management methods including visibility walls, daily huddles, status reports, linked metrics, and leader standard work.
  • Workplace organization. Improve efficiency by eliminating waste through 5S workplace organization and standard work.  
  • Continuous flow. Further improve capacity and efficiency to meet demand in real time; eliminate rework; explore the application of a flow cell to reduce wastes and expand capacity; and study the application of concepts learned thus far to your telephone access systems.
  • Sustainment. Learn methods for holding the gains achieved and build a plan for continued improvement.

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