Mental Health Care Hospital works with hospital team and long-term care patient population to reduce weight gain

Problem: In a nationalized mental health institute hospital, weight gain while in care remained a key problem with roughly 40% of patients gaining in BMI during the first six months of their stay. This cost the hospital additional offsite visits and cost patients in terms of health & time. After analysis and discussions with stakeholders, the following solutions were implemented:

  • Performed quality review for weight data entry to monitor accuracy and consistency of data.
  • Worked with nutritionist recommendations to enhance diets to reduce amount of carbohydrates and complex sugars consumed and increase nutritional options offered in vending machines and during mealtimes.
  • Conducted a review of recreational activities and incorporated additional physical fitness activities tailored to meet needs of patients while rewarding them for partaking in these activities.
  • Developed monitoring tools to alert medical staff and clinical nutritionist(s) when patients begin to gain weight and ensure that the required data entry for weight and height is consistently maintained on a monthly basis.

Results: Once the Hospital paid attention to the obesity issue, the obesity population among individuals in care gradually declined. Over a two-year period, the percentage of obese patients declined from 42% to 34%.

Manufacturing company supplying healthcare components works with customer to define acceptable standards to meet stringent quality requirements


Problem: A manufacturing company of a chemical product had a high rate of returned, nonconforming product with one of their healthcare customers. The customer complained the defects required them to add resources to sort the good product from the bad in order to protect their end-customers from the nonconformance. Both organizations had a high level of frustration when interacting regarding these defects. Neither trusted the other to accurately sort nonconforming material. In response, the manufacturing company developed a rigorous internal rejection program to protect the healthcare customer from defects, but resulted in a high scrap rate, at times up to 30% product thrown away.

  • Visited customer to obtain real time and first-hand feedback regarding nonconforming material. Established a Lean Six Sigma team, including both the company & the customer to solve the defect problem.
  • Worked with customer to document standard criteria for ‘critical to quality’ characteristics to address primary concern regarding ‘debris and dirt’. Clearly communicated the customer’s definition and built the inspection process around this definition.
  • Identified primary source of debris during the manufacturing process and implemented 5S to improve cleanliness and operation of this key piece of equipment.
  • Developed protective process and packaging to shelter the product from excessive dirt during the manufacturing process.

Results: Customer rejects dropped 73% to a minimal level, from several hundred thousand dollars a month. Internal rejects for this reason code also saw significant reduction saving the manufacturing company over $670,877 annually.

Centralized IT Billing shared services team focuses on eliminating manual steps, setting up a governance process and reducing rework to satisfy internal customers receiving IT bills.

Problem: A centralized billing process responsible for billing $750M of IT products and services, including Compute, AS400, Corporate Services, and Telecom services had complaints from customers that the process was not transparent, difficult to use, untimely and required significant rework.

  • Developed survey method and established monthly meeting with product owners receiving the billing to obtain feedback and address concerns.
  • Documented value stream map of billing process to identify and address manual process steps, defect causing steps, excessive resources required and bottlenecks driving high cycle time to process billing.
  • Created a governance process to ensure refund requests were handled with standard, approved process.
  • Improved reporting based upon feedback from the product community (customer base)

Results: Team was able to boost net promoter score results from a negative value to positive score within 6 months. Refund dollars dropped from $848K in January to $32K in December, a 96% drop in refunds processed.