Before the big game, football players huddle in the locker room with their coaches, devising plays on a large board in an effort to win the game. But huddling is no longer exclusively for sports. It’s just one of the new strategies being applied at Akron Children’s Hospital to ensure its staff functions as a winning team.
As Akron Children’s Hospital moves forward with its $200 million campus expansion, a crystal ball would come in handy. With healthcare reform, changing demographics, and other uncertainties, our goal is to build flexibility into our design in every way possible. We can make educated guesses regarding future patient volumes and acuity, reimbursement levels, the always-changing technology and best practices for care, but they are just that – educated guesses.
As Akron Children’s Hospital moves forward with its plans to build a $200 million critical care tower, teams continue to meet, brainstorm and test out architectural designs in a true-to-scale setting in weeklong Kaizens. Kaizen is a Lean term that refers to improving processes continually by making incremental changes.
It’s 3 a.m. in the ER when the call comes in. There’s been a car accident. A 16-year-old boy – unrestrained and the driver – is being life-flighted. He is in respiratory distress and has head injuries. His 10-year-old brother and front-seat passenger is coming by ambulance. His injuries, neck pain and an obvious deformity to the lower body, appear less serious.