Fallon Clinic Addresses Wait Times

A widespread problem in physician practices is excessive wait time in the reception area and exam room. At Fallon Clinic, the team found that they could greatly reduce the number of complaints about wait time by merely informing patients when physicians were running behind schedule. Just by communicating with patients about delays, staff members could lose far less otherwise-productive time fielding complaints and apologizing for long wait times.

Larry D. Coté, president and CEO of Lean Advisors Inc., says Lean thinking allows businesses in all industries to do more with what they have. To quantify inefficiency, Coté encourages practices to create an Enterprise Value Stream Map illustrating every activity involved in a process or event from end to end. “Then note all the non-value activity that goes on from start to finish of an activity. In many organizations, staff members may spend closer to 80%-90% of their time on non-value work, he says. “If they can remove 30%-40% of that non-value, you can imagine how much more pride the staff is going to have in their jobs because they know they’re providing the best care possible-what they were trained to do.”

Staff usually have too much work to do in too little time. Giving them more time to do their work is a key goal. Coté says, quoting Albert Einstein: “We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.”

Read the entire article at https://www.leanadvisors.com/lean-success-stories/government/fallon-clinic-addresses-wait-times