Document Type



This is a case study focused on Backus Hospital in Norwich, Connecticut. The purpose of this report is to discuss ways for Backus Hospital to improve patient flows, which will increase patient satisfaction and safety, increase revenue, and decrease costs. The focus of the research is how the kaizen blitz and A3 methodologies can be used to develop ways to improve patient flow processes. Literature reviews on flow, process improvement, and innovation strategies, both within and outside of the healthcare industry were conducted. The hospital is dedicated to process improvement, innovation and quality improvement, so methodologies based on the Toyota Production System will be applied to patient flows from the emergency room to a hospital bed. The end goal is to improve patient satisfaction and reduce waiting time and movement of patients throughout the hospital system by decreasing the average length of time that patients stay in the emergency department. This case study focuses on the segment of the process from when patients’ admit orders are received to when they are discharged to specific floors. This was accomplished through a rapid cycle improvement project where a kaizen blitz was used along with A3 processes to implement change. Some of the major policy changes that resulted from the project include the development of a pull system, standardized processes and improved communication.