Critical Care: Ground-Breaking & Practical Process Improvement

The Midwest Healthcare Quality Alliance, hosted by Memorial Healthcare in Springfield, Illinois, held a ground-breaking event in December to examine critical care from the patient’s perspective.


The room was filled with individuals from the Memorial Medical Center, the Chatham Fire Protection District, SIU School of Medicine, and others including myself – all there to see how the patient’s experience would unfold.


The goal for the day was to follow a fake patient through their entire experience – from the 911 call until their surgery was completed – in order to identify ways to improve the entire pathway process, including the patient’s experience, communications, preparedness, and other aspects.


Medical simulation has been done in the healthcare industry to help clinicians learn clinical skills like intubating a patient and CPR, or to practice their patient interactions before they have to interact with a real patient.


Memorial’s simulation was innovative because it took these single interactions and linked them all together, thus making it easier to see how the different pieces fit together. In this way, they are able to test the entire pathway, not just the components.


Systems thinking is not a new concept, but actually seeing the full process happen in front of you, with real people interacting with a fake patient just like they would in their daily roles, was truly a new experience. This takes the theory of systems design and turns it into practical process improvement, with a real impact on patients.


To learn more about how Memorial Healthcare is integrating their medical simulation and discrete event simulation tools, along with Lean and Six Sigma and other toolsets, please reach out and keep an eye out for the April webinar!


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