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Healthcare experts head to Atlanta for the latest in operational and quality improvement tools, methods and concepts. See you at the HSPI conference this February!

Healthcare Labor Management Online On-Demand

In this training course, learn the critical aspects of designing and executing a comprehensive labor management program for your health facility at your own pace.

Health Systems by William “Ike” Eisenhauer

My last column for ISE magazine will be the one I have wanted to write since the beginning. Imagine a healthcare system where the primary care provider assigned to a patient is a nurse.


Please join our upcoming Webinar 
Understanding FMEA - What's the Worst That Can Happen? (Open to All)
Dec. 12, 2 P.M.
Presented by Society for Health Systems and HSPI Conference CommitteePresenter: Eric Smathers, performance improvement facilitator, Medical University of South Carolina
Discover how to use a Failure Mode and Effects Analysis (FMEA) tool during this interactive lesson to identify high-risk process steps based on the consequences of failure.
For more information and registration. This Webinars is open to the public, share the link with your collegues!

Register Now: Healthcare Systems Process Improvement Conference 2018
Early-bird savings are now available when you register this month for the 2018 Healthcare Systems Process Improvement Conference (HSPI), Feb. 21-23 in Atlanta! Don't miss a moment of the conference program, from engaging pre-conference workshops to several interactive networking events. Keynote presentations from industry leaders will impart innovative discoveries from the field. Lock in your discount now. 
Register for HSPI before Dec. 27 and save $200 off the onsite rate!

Cybersecurity Defense Tips During Holiday season
Historical trends have shown that the holiday season for healthcare and many other industries open doors to many cybersecurity attacks. This increase can be attributed to lower IT staffing coverage from vacations and more employees working remotely. Healthcare IT news highlights tips for users and organizations to minimize cybersecurity risks such as conducting internal phishing training sessions before the holidays arrive to increase employee alertness.  Full advice can be read here.

New SHS Book Review - Why Hospitals Should Fly by John Nance 
Did you know that the SHS website has a reviews of key healthcare business books for your professional growth and development. In efforts to revamp the list with more reviews, our member Jordan Aronhalt has written a great review of John Nance's book Why Hospitals Should Fly.  See the review here.
If there are specific books you would like to see reviewed or if you are interested in reviewing a book yourself, please contact   

2017 Malcolm Baldridge Award - Healthcare Sector Winners
Celebrating its 30th anniversary this year, the Baldrige Award is a Presidential-level honor, recognizing exemplary practices among American organizations and businesses including an unceasing drive for radical innovation, thoughtful leadership, and administrative improvement. This year's awardees are proven success stories, providing a rubric for other businesses across the country to follow. The healthcare sector winners acknowledged were Castle Medical Center in Kailua, Hawaii and Southcentral Foundation in Anchorage, Alaska.  To read more about the excellent work by these organizations click here.  

Study: No advantages to robotic-assisted nephrectomy
Latest study in robotic surgeries evaluated use of robotic-assisted vs laparoscopic radical nephrectomy from 2003 to 2015 across 416 hospitals. Study evaluated trends and complications associated with each procedure. The study concluded that the use of robotic-assistance was not associated with increased risk of any or major complications but was associated with prolonged operating time and higher hospital costs compared with laparoscopic surgery. To read more about approach and full article, click here.

SHS Young Professionals Member Highlights - Nicholas Ballester

B.S., Wright State University, 2013
Ph.D., Wright State University, 2017
Six Sigma Green Belt, IISE, 2012
Research: Improving inpatient discharge planning
Career: Process and Development Engineer, MPA Healthcare Solutions, Chicago
IISE Member: since 2010 (WSU student chapter VP, then president)
Awards: Gilbreth Memorial Fellowship (IISE, 2015), Best Healthcare Systems Track Paper (ISERC 2017), Outstanding ISE student (WSU, 2013)
Personal Interests: Travel, exploring, violin, sci-fi/fantasy, reading, museums

Process in Place - Disaster Preparedness
Dr. Kevin Mendes highlights the remarkable processes that took place to treat Las Vegas shooting massacre patients. Utilizing his SWAT training, Dr. Mendes quickly identified bottlenecks and countermeasures to eliminate bottlenecks to provide immediate care to patients that needed it the most.  To read more about the work of the Sunrise Hospital team to save patients click here.

Students, explore a career in healthcare with the Society for Health Systems today! 
By Adam Schleis - MSOE IISE President

If you are like me you and approximately 98.75 million other people on this planet, you have a Netflix subscription. The cheapest option is $7.99 per month, which equates to 96 dollars per year. However, Netflix does not help students determine what they want to do with their Industrial or Systems Engineering degree.  There is one membership subscription that does benefit students in the healthcare field that desperately needs Industrial and Systems Engineering help. Students who are already members of the Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineering pay less than a month of Netflix for a wealth of information. Of course, I am talking about how it only costs 5 dollars (for the whole year!) for students to join the Society for Health Systems if they are already members of IISE. It is a struggle for students to truly know what they want to do with their career. For only $5 a year, a student IISE member can gain insight into where their career could take them in such an expanding fieldRead more of the benefits from Adam.


Lean Training: Belts Don’t Convey Mastery & Absence Doesn’t Indicate Ignorance by Laura Silvoy
An individual looking to expand their knowledge of lean faces many choices today. There are books and blogs to read, webinars to watch, podcasts to follow, and training courses to attend. Choosing where to spend limited time and resources can quickly become overwhelming. Additional factors can make this decision more difficult, including a saturated market lacking standardization, the idea that belts don’t necessarily convey mastery, and the fact that experience, not belts, makes great lean practitioners.

Performing a quick internet search will show thousands of lean training programs that currently exist. Some are offered online; others, in person. Some require weeks of study; others, a few days. Some combine the methods of lean and Six Sigma; others focus on only lean. Some involve project work; others are entirely course work. As more industries embraced the methodologies of lean, the number of profession-specific training programs grew rapidly, saturating the market with a variety of training programs having little in common. Read more here.

What Does It Mean to Have a "Lean Management System"?
Nate Hurle from the Cleveland Clinic writes about their visit to Intermountain Health to learn about their Lean Management System, what they mean by a "management method," and the difference between "management by objectives" and a lean style of leadership.
Read the article here.


Are you interested in getting involved with the Society for Health Systems (SHS) but are not sure how?  We have multiple opportunities for involvement starting with our seven committees and our monthly newsletter.  I am very excited with what we have in store for this year, but for SHS to be successful we need your help!  Below are the committees and their corresponding chairs.  Please reach out to the committee(s) that you are most interested in.

Committee Descriptions:

Student Committee: Offers insights to students on healthcare industrial engineering careers including bios of members with successful careers, virtual webinars, and mentoring programs.  Guides the organization on activities and opportunities for student members. 
Young/Early Career Professionals Committee: Serves as a conduit to help student members transition to career professionals.  Creates a networking opportunity including mentoring and webinars.  Guides the organization on activities and opportunities for young professional and early career members. 
Experienced Professionals Committee: Ensures effective processes related to the Diplomate program.  Guides the organization on activities and opportunities for experienced professional members. 
Conference Committee: Plans and coordinates the annual Society for Health Systems' Healthcare Systems Process Improvement (HSPI) Conference.  HSPI is your source for the latest in operational and quality improvement tools, methods and concepts such as lean, Six Sigma, productivity, benchmarking, simulation and project management.
Communications Committee: Actively engages members and nonmembers through social media and other forms of communication.  Manages the monthly newsletter, improves the organizational brand, and creates consistent messaging.  
Education Committee: Supports the educational webinars focused on relevant and timely topics that are important to our members.  Manages the Lean Coffee Events that connect Society for Health Systems members in local cities (i.e., Atlanta, Knoxville, Birmingham, etc.)
Academic Committee: Connection between the Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineers Annual Conference and the Society for Health Systems.  Supports members who work in academia with relation to publications, research, mentorship, and student involvement.   Newsletter: If you are interested in submitting articles or writing articles for the newsletter, please contact the editor. 

Call for Paper: Special Issue for Health Informatics, IIE Transactions on Healthcare Systems Engineering
Health informatics is a multidisciplinary field that uses health information technology to improve healthcare on its effectiveness, efficiency, timeliness, safety and quality. Health informatics bridges information technology, computer science, statistics, data analytics, management science, systems engineering, social science and other fields to improve the healthcare workflow, enable better clinical processes, support decision making, identify patients risk, and provide information to enhance patient safety and quality.

Prospective authors are encouraged to submit their completed or ongoing original work related to the health informatics field in this special issue. Click  here for topics.

IISE Transactions on Healthcare Systems Engineering – A Forum to Bridge Research and Healthcare Practices
IIE Transactions on Healthcare Systems Engineering is an official journal of the Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineers. Our journal publishes research motivated by the challenging problems related to healthcare systems. It aims to foster the healthcare systems community by bringing research papers that have a strong methodological focus and direct applicability to healthcare systems to the audience. Currently, we publish papers in one of four categories: Healthcare Operations Management, Healthcare Informatics, Medical Decision Making and Socio-Technical Systems Analysis. Read more .