Recap of the 2023 Lean Healthcare Transformation Summit

Over the last three years, the healthcare community has found innovative and resourceful ways to not only combat challenges, but also thrive and grow. That is why the theme for this year’s Lean Healthcare Transformation Summit was Learn, Share, Connect: Accelerating change during dynamic times. Our presenters shared about developing their teams, building a resilient and equitable culture within organizations, and transforming both operations and systems.

Below are some key takeaways from this event.

The Importance of Developing Your Teams

To support a culture of continuous improvement, it is essential for leaders to take time to focus on their internal team dynamics, relationships and leadership behaviors. Some points brought up around this were:

  • Jason Neff, from Intermountain Healthcare, stating, “A key that holds this all together: leader follow-up…This creates clarity, alignment and accountability.”
  • Catalysis’ John Toussaint emphasizing the need to define behaviors and establish a process for leaders to hold each other accountable.
  • Colby Parrott and Isaac Hoffman, from The Vancouver Clinic, challenging us to consider that, “People are re-imaging their work and we as organizations need to reimagine what motivates and drives our people.”

Fostering a Resilient and Equitable Culture

There were many great examples of building an internal culture and the need for healthcare organizations to push themselves to become more equitable to all. Some other concepts that stood out were:

  • Montage Health’s Rachel DeMaster and Dr. Steve Cabrales sharing about building an internal culture, “Culture is dependent on that local leader and what happens in that executive suite. What they believe and do will change the behaviors of the frontline. If you want to have this continuum of connection to what’s the strategy, what’s important, what’s the vision, how are we going to get there down to what’s the action or decision I need to take today…those things all have to connect.” Also the statement, ““You can’t shortcut culture.”
  • University Hospitals Sussex’s Andy Heeps opening attendees’ eyes by explaining, “if we’re good at this, we’re just kind of low average.”
  • Julie King, from Advocate Health, prodding attendees to, “Consider (who was in the room, who was missing), Connect (are you always tapping the same people? Are you increasing your network?), and Champion (make sure you are amplifying the voices of those who are not always heard).” As well as encouraging those present that, “you can do the federally mandated minimum (which is not much) or you can do more.”
  • The equity panel helping with the understanding of diversity and what it is. It is the practice of humility, practice of respect for every individual, every single day and creating the space to speak up.

Transforming Operations & Systems

In the pursuit of organizational excellence, it is imperative that we are continuous learners, constantly improving both ourselves as well as our entire organizations.

Here are some highlights about taking action to transform internal operations and systems:

  • We were the cream of the crap. On average, 1.2 million patients will be harmed in healthcare this year. Even if you’re performing at the 95th percentile you’re still harming people and people are still dying that don’t need to die. Anyone who says, ‘if it ain’t broke don’t fix it is wrong.” – John Toussaint on dealing with a leadership team where some have bought in and others haven't
  • “We’ve now included our DE&I director in our value stream analysis. They’ve helped us to identify and come up with improvement initiatives specifically aimed at reducing population health disparities.” - Jeff Grizzell, Allina Health
  • Beau Gostomsky, Children’s Mercy Hospital reconfirming and encouraging teams to know, “We are here to be a partner next to you, not be an interference or barrier to you getting your work done and improving the organization.”

Having the chance to gather and learn from so many healthcare leaders in one place is always inspiring and reenergizing.

If you were able to attend the Summit this year, please share something that stood out to you in the comments below.

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