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Virginia Mason Medical Center Case Study

1869 words - 8 pages

Virginia Mason Medical Center
Case study

Question 1
How could TPS be used to solve the problems that Kaplan was facing at VMMC?
VMMC was facing several critical issues when Kaplan assumed leadership of the organization:
* High number of competitors in same geographic area
* Lost substantial amount of money for the first time
* Low morale among staff
While Kaplan had implemented some changes to cut costs, he really needed to identify systematic ways to improve the quality of service and differentiate VMMC from its competitors. This is where TPS would prove valuable. Instead of being just another approach by management to create a more cost effective organization, TPS ...view middle of the document...

However, the TQM process simply reinforced the old structure: it was still top down, focused on preventing errors, and focused on procedures (or processes). Ultimately this approach proved ineffective and the VMMC implemented the TPS approach in its place. Because the TPS changed the focus to the customer, it therefore forced collaboration. Which results in the following model:

As you can see, there is a vast difference between the service triangle and the old model where customers were peripheral to the physicians.

Question 2
How does the VMPS compare to TPS?

(A)Comparing with TPS, the key elements of VMPS are different
The TPS was introduced at Toyota, Japan in 1950. The key elements of TPS are the following pillars—
1. When a work discovered a problem he could not fix he can call the cord to ask a supervisor to join the problem solving, which is considering a temporary fix but not a permanent one.
2. Continuous incremental improvements
3. Flow emphasized—Everything flowed with pre-specified paths and specific persons or machines.

The VMPS key elements are
1. Value-streaming mapping
2. RPIW—Rapid process improvement workshop
3. 5S—Sort, Simplify, Sweep, Standardize, Self-Discipline
4. 3P—Production, Preparation, Process
5. Everyday Lean
6. PSA—Patient safety alert system
7. Bundles—collection of best practices

With the different elements of 2 systems, we can find that VMPS comparing with TPS is
1. Higher focus on liability
2. Higher focus on flexibility
3. Lower focus on cost
4. Higher focus on quality
5. Higher focus on speed
And we can see that the key elements of VMPS are more suitable for the medical center while TPS was initially designed for car manufacturing industry. And for VMPS, it’s more like having the resources needed when they are needed, in just the right quantity, and at just the right time, to achieve 100 percent quality and service expectations the first time.

(B) In his management of VMMC what other, non-TPS, components has Kaplan used for improving the situation?
As the comparison made above, RPIW, 3P and PSA are the components that are the non-TPS and Kaplan used for improving the situation, also they developed the 5S strategy based on Standardization that is from TPS.

(C) What other components not yet used could possibly be added to the VMPS?
For instance, can the TPS also be applied to complex patients and inherently variable clinical processes? Why (not)?
We believe that TPS can be applied to complex patents and inherently variable clinical processes but not without any adaption. One of the important pillar of TPS is JIT (Just-in-time production) to reduce the any unnecessary stock and also remove all the waste so that the cost can be lower, however in the situation described in this question, complex patients and variable clinical processes requires more flexibility to the organization and the management comparing the car...

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