Applying Lean Principles to Board Work

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St Charles Board Article

St. Charles Health System’s embrace of lean practices led to a new culture and revitalized governance model

Health care is ripe for change. The evidence is all around us. A majority of healthcare leaders recently surveyed said hospitals and health systems are most in need of disruptive innovation (New England Journal of Medicine Catalyst, February 16, 2017). Consumers are taking charge of their own health and seeking providers that deliver high-quality, affordable and accessible care in ways they have come to expect from their favorite retailers. And disrupters from within and outside of healthcare are joining forces and competing with traditional health care organizations to give consumers what they are looking for. 

Change is here and more is coming. The impact of forces like consumerism and disruptive innovation, critical for healthcare organizations to understand and address, will likely vary across markets and over time. But, when significant, targeted and sustainable organizational change is needed, how exactly do large organizations like hospitals make that happen? And what role, if any, can the board play?

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