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Advanced Practice Nurses with Black Belt Cert.

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  • #25314

    Lorax
    Participant

    Trish,
     
    I’ve been involved in manufacturing for the last 12 years, Six Sigma (6S) for 5 and am watching as 6S and Lean get introduced to the virgin territory of Healthcare. So no sage words of wisdom re combining your two roles from me I’m afraid!
     
    Still, I have difficulty in keeping my big mouth shut so here goes:
    A Black Belt (in industry at least) should be full time. They spend 100% of their time and efforts on process improvement projects. Usual comment on this is that you get part-time results from a part-time BB.
    When a full time BB gets released back to the wild (average time in a BB role is 2 years), they generally get a promotion to a level higher than they were at before their training started. The thought is that with all their new logical-thought-patterns, reliance-on-data-rather-than-opinion and new soft-skills, they will be significantly more effective than they were. This new approach is intended to affect those around the released BB (positively) and prep the BB for a future role in some form of leadership position.
     
    Lorax

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    #60966

    Trish G
    Participant

    Lorax, thank you.  I am at my 18 month mark as a Black Belt and have been presented with a unique opportunity.  I plan to combine my Black Belt experience with my new APN skills/knowledge, so was hoping that there may be another APN who has experienced a similar situation.  There is no one in my organization with the same credentials, so I’m trying to learn how to best use both to my/my employer’s best interest. 
    I agree with your assessement of the BB role and it will prove invaluable in my new role.  I have a whole new way of looking at processes/data that I did not have before.

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    #60967

    Lorax
    Participant

    Trish,
    I don’t know what your new opportunity involves but in making the move back to the wild I was really surprised at how little of the 6S stuff I used. The most useful thing was to deal with problems using the DMAIC structure. Define clearly what the issue was first…
    That and assess the measurement system before you start believing its results (top tip for this: measure one thing ten times – the variation you get gives a real “quick and dirty” feel for how the thing is working).
    Good luck and keep us posted on progress.
    Lorax
     
    PS
    Ihi.org may be a good resource

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    #60968

    Lorax
    Participant

    A quick question:
    Is a Healthcare background essential to functioning as a Black Belt in a hospital or could someone from another sector do it (assuming they had decent 6S experience).
    What extra challenges would they face? Are there any advantages?

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    #60969

    Brit
    Participant

    Answer to your question about healthcare experience is no, you don’t need it. Although, there is a learning curve to the terminology used in healthcare and especially the uniques revenue streams involved in the financial side.  The reason I say no is that a system is a system, no matter what the widget.  Not trying to diminish the role of healthcare by any means – I am a Director in it.  The main difference in healthcare vs. mfg or service is the large variation attributed to the human condition and th ehuman interaction. Once that is accounted for, the system remains.  I have found, because of the large amount of normal variation that achieving 6S is extremely difficult.  4S is much more realistic, although we should never quit.

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    #60970

    Brit
    Participant

    Listen to Lorax. Sounds like good advice.  If you are moving back into a caregiver role as well as functioning as a black belt, here are some ideas:

    As you interaction with docs increase, get them involved, information, research or paper opportunities, etc. in regards to 6S.  Our biggest challenge has been getting docs in the mix.
    Be a liason for your maangement team in selecting critical care and flow projects.  You will have the “internal” view that might get lost from above.  Two critical areas where you might help are if you are developing or want to develop any centers of excellence – data driven decision making is critical here. In addition, flow opportunities from managment are often centered where they show the most WIP – mainly the ED.  Help them to see the internal flow struggles if you have any.
    Create a decision making momentum by recruiting your PI people to measure key indicators of care and flow.  These are indicators apart from the normal JCAHO or CMS benchmarks.
    Getfinance involved somehow.  I’m not sure of the state of you 6s initiative or the invlovement of finance, but there are huge $ opportunities in days to bill, coding accuracy, reduction of outsourcing costs, etc. Challenge management to get everyone involved.
    Lastly – my opinion follows Lorax – hopefully your hospital will maintain full time BBs to manage projects.  If they are selecting to move in a different direction, then I would be concerned of a reduction in 6s efforts overall.
    Just my thoughts.

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    #60977

    Trish G
    Participant

    Thank you to Lorax and Brit….both of your comments/recommendations are currently in place or are being implemented at my institution, so this is good news.   I appreciate the feedback.
      

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