Stuck in the Patient Referral Black Hole? Call Code Lean Six Sigma

Madhura Chandak B, Executive Director - Clinical Integration, John Peter Smith Health Network, Fort Worth, USA

Keywords: Health care, Optimization, Automation

Industry: Healthcare

Level: Intermediate


At JPS, the ambulatory consultation referral management process to the specialty clinics has lacked workflow efficiency. It has caused delay in patient care and dissatisfaction amongst the members of care team as well as the patients and families. Application of the Lean Six Sigma principles, DMAIC methodology and Business Process Reengineering (BPR) has resulted into 36% reduction in non-value-add activity. The key success strategies included JPS Connection Exclusion rule implementation, roll out of standard operating procedures (SOP) and compact automation in the electronic health record (EHR). Optimization of this workflow has offered a solid foundation for effective closed loop referral management.