Quoteworthy
It’s almost impossible for one person to be completely responsible for improvement; everyone who has a stake in the processes you’re trying to change has to be at the table and part of the discussion.
Amy Locke

Most Recent
How Sue Childress Creates a Culture of Innovation

As the director of nursing at Huntsman Cancer Hospital, Sue Childress shares her passion for improvement with a team of hundreds of nurses and HCAs. Learn how a cape and hat inspired Childress’ nursing career, and a passion for cultivating innovation.

Leading Change: Ask, Listen, Learn and Engage

In 2011, Utah’s Intermediate Care Unit (IMCU) decided to improve patient safety through a new approach: engage the entire team in identifying and implementing the improvement. Clinical Operations Director Trell Inzunza shares the 4-step process that engaged the entire team to improve.

How Utah Cardiology Improved Value By Reducing Drug Costs

Scope is a powerful tool when changing practice. Rather than trying to revamp in one large swoop, scoping an improvement down to palatable stages can overcome resistance and lead to meaningful results for future improvement cycles. Although new improvers may feel this approach delays impact, repeated improvement cycles often lead to sustained care transformation. Dr. Theophilus Owan demonstrated this principle in his quest to improve value by standardizing anti-thrombotic medications given to patients undergoing percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI).

Systems Approach to Error

Medical errors often occur due to system failure, not human failure. Hospitalist Kencee Graves helps explain why we need to evaluate medical error from a system standpoint.

How Burn Clinic Implemented Patient Reported Outcomes

Including patients in treatment planning improves their experience, and patient reported outcomes (PROs) offer new ways to do just that — talking with patients about how treatment impacts their daily life. Clinical Nurse Coordinator Lisa McMurtrey shares the Burn Clinic team’s award-winning work implementing PROs during patient visits without disrupting flow.

Celebrating Our Culture of Improvement

Evidence-based practice (EBP) integrates clinical expertise with the best available evidence to drive innovation and improvement. Sue Childress, director of nursing at Huntsman Cancer Institute, champions the process in advance of the 5th Annual Evidence Based Practice Council Poster Fair.

How an Avalanche Highlighted the Importance of Root Cause Analysis

Utah's value engineers turn any real-world event into a cause for improvement. Recently, senior value engineer Will McNett and a friend were swept up in an avalanche, traveling 50 yards down the southeast face of Albright Peak in Grand Teton National Park. What many would consider terrifying, Will considered a cause for observation, investigation, analysis, and improvement.

How the Burn Trauma ICU Eliminated Central Line Infections

Is zero possible? In the case of central line infections, the answer was once no. A CLABSI (central line associated blood stream infection) was once considered a car crash, or an expected inevitability of care. When University of Utah’s Burn Trauma Intensive Care Unit started treating CLABSIs like a plane crash, or a tragedy demanding in-depth investigation and cultural change, zero became possible.

The Science of Scheduling

Delivering a great health care experience is only possible with one crucial component: reliable scheduling. It’s such an essential part of efficient operations, in fact, that the University of Utah Health created an access optimization team to help providers across the system.

Lean Behind the Scenes: Sterile Processing

Sterile Processing runs a lean operation, delivering millions of instruments to University of Utah Health’s procedural teams. Director of value engineering Steve Johnson, assisted by the video wizardry of Charlie Ehlert, sheds light on our system’s unseen infection prevention heroes.

A Framework to Measure Value-added Time in Health Care

The dojo welcomes guest author and senior value engineer Will McNett with a deep dive into clinic capacity utilization. McNett borrows from manufacturing to offer a framework to measure and increase what really matters to patients: time spent with their provider.

How UNI Decreased Delay to Admission (And Improved Team Engagement)

Want to show your new employees that you respect them and you’re committed to making things better? Social work manager Kevin Curtis used University of Utah Health’s value improvement methodology to confront one of the most common challenges in health care—getting patients from the ED to a bed. Using concepts from lean and six sigma, Curtis identified waste, prioritized root causes, and fostered his team’s shared purpose in getting patients quickly to care.