Tuesday, July 30, 2013

It’s easier to get the job done when everything is in its place - 5 (or 6) S's revisited

Last week a team from GBMA did a weeklong kaizen. Staff from Joppa Road, with the help of GBMA COO Ben Beres and others, worked to systematize how their office was setup with a subsequent plan to extend this to other offices.

On August 30th of last year (http://ahealthydialogue.blogspot.com/2012_08_01_archive.html), I wrote about the 5 or 6 S process: When Safety is added the 6 S’s are:

1. Sort: eliminating everything not required for the work being performed
2. Separate: efficiently placing and arranging equipment and material
3. Shine: tidying and cleaning
4. Standardize: standardizing and continually improving the previous three
5. Sustain: establishing discipline in sustaining workplace organization
6. Safety: creating a safe work environment

The team: Elaine, Susan, Vivian, Maryanne, Jeanne, Joyce, Robin, Janice,
Jennifer, Courtney and Ben 

The team did a fantastic job of organizing all of the “stuff” required to get the job done in a primary care office and made it much easier to know what needs to be replenished. They started by throwing away all of the accumulated things that they didn't need and then planned to store things to minimize steps to get things when they were needed. They bought bins and created audit forms to make re-ordering easier. The process also creates the discipline of standard work. I am very proud of the team!

Annual Competencies
I was completing my annual competencies last week and stopped for a moment to reflect on the importance of knowing a core of information for all of our GBMC employees. While it does take time to complete these tests, it’s imperative that we know what to do in a fire, that we know how to keep ourselves safe on the job, and that we understand the importance of keeping information about our patients confidential. Unless all of us have this basic knowledge, we cannot get to higher reliability and to our vision. I want to thank everyone for completing their annual competencies by July 31st.  

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