The use of Lean Six Sigma methodology in the reduction of patient length of stay following anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction surgery
Teeling, Sean Paul
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Moffatt, S., Garry, C., McCann, H., Teeling, S.P., Ward, M. and McNamara, M. (2022) 'The use of Lean Six Sigma methodology in the reduction of patient length of stay following anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction surgery', International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 19(3), article no. e1588.
Background: The purpose of this study was to reduce the length of stay of anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction patients within a private hospital in Ireland, reducing any non-value-added activity in the patient pathway, with the goal of increasing patient flow, bed capacity, and revenue generation within the hospital system, while maintaining patient satisfaction. Methods: We used a pre-/post-intervention design and Lean Six Sigma methods and tools to assess and improve the current process. Results: A reduction in inpatient length of stay by 57%, and a reduction in identified non-value-added activity by 88%, resulted in a new day-case surgery pathway for anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction patients. The pathway evidenced no re-admissions and demonstrated patient satisfaction. Conclusion: Six months post-project commencement, we had successfully achieved our goals of reducing our anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction patient’s length of stay. This study contributes to the growing body of published evidence which shows that adopting a Lean Six Sigma approach can be successfully employed to optimise care and surgical pathways in healthcare.