Three attributes of an award-winning quality and safety team

The SIMUL8 team would like to congratulate our esteemed users at Memorial Health System on winning the 2016 American Hospital Association (AHA) McKesson Quest for Quality Prize! To discover what makes them an award-winning team, read on.


Every year, the AHA seeks out the best hospital systems that “show leadership and innovation in quality improvement and safety in patient care” and award the McKesson Quest for Quality Prize. This year’s prize has been awarded to SIMUL8 users Memorial Health System of Springfield, Illinois.

But what does it take to become an award-winning healthcare quality and safety team? We round up three essential qualities displayed by Memorial Health System below.

AHA Quest for Quality


Winning an award for innovation takes commitment.

Just ask the quality and safety team at Memorial Healthcare System, who have trained and supported their hospital system in completing more than 300 Lean Six Sigma projects in just 5 years! These projects have touched nearly every aspect of their hospital system, from the operating room to the parking lot – and all of them have an effect in some way on experience, quality and safety in patient care.

Just a few examples include:


Winning an award for innovation requires visionary leadership.

According to Charles Callahan, their EVP and COO, “We are successful because we care, and we care enough to keep reengineering and keep changing to improve the things that need to be improved.”

That is serious talk, and the leadership team has backed it up with action. The 70,000 square-foot Memorial Center for Leaning and Innovation opened in 2015 as a centerpiece of their vision to be a center of excellence. The center hosts clinicians, staff, and EMTs for training and to test new ideas before implementing them in a real clinical setting.


Winning an award for innovation requires, well… innovation!

Memorial has committed to deepening their use of advanced improvement techniques – and using the right tool at the right time for the right problem. This includes the integration of big data analytics, Lean Six Sigma methodologies, virtual discrete event simulation (where SIMUL8’s software has been utilized), and live medical simulation. They use all of these tools as a part of a holistic approach to improvement.

Todd Roberts, Six Sigma Master Black Belt and Administrator for the Quality and Safety Program, put it this way:


Todd Roberts

“SIMUL8 has been a valuable application for expanding our range and depth of analytical abilities. It should be considered an important tool in the design of every robust process improvement program.”


Congratulations again to Todd and his team for their commitment, vision, and innovation as they lead healthcare forward toward higher quality!


Learn more about how Memorial Health System has applied discrete event simulation

Discover how Memorial Health System ensured the long-term feasibility of a $31 million operating room expansion project by optimizing the flow of patient traffic and identifying bottlenecks using SIMUL8.

Read the full case study