Lean as a Management System at Virginia Mason

Updated: Nov 5, 2018



We recently listened to a great Podcast where Modern Healthcare reporter Andis Robeznieks interviewed Dr. Gary Kaplan, chairman and CEO of Virginia Mason Medical Center on his system's quality-improvement and cost-reduction work using Lean as management system. Virginia Mason a great example of innovative leadership in healthcare.

Key take-aways include:

  • Virginia Mason generated over $1B in revenue in 2014

  • Had to challenge long standing beliefs and assumption and develop a new physician and leadership compact

  • Challenged the myth that standardization is antithetical to innovation. "The standard work has become the platform that can then be improved"

  • "The pathway to improving quality and safety is the same pathway to lowering cost"

Virginia Mason is the subject of a new book by management consultant Paul Plsek titled Accelerating Health Care Transformation with Lean and Innovation: The Virginia Mason Experience


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