Cedars-Sinai Medical Center

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Grand Rounds

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Upcoming CME Conferences

Click below to view a complete list of all scheduled Continuing Medical Education conferences.

CME Newsletter - September 2015 (PDF)


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Course Introduces Lean Management System

The Cedars-Sinai Performance Improvement Learning and Living Program will introduce the Lean management system to interested faculty members and employees this fall, starting with a White Belt training course.

The Lean White Belt course is a four-hour program that provides an introduction to Lean management principles. The course comes highly recommended for faculty, employees and leaders working on "high-value" performance improvement projects.

Participants will learn tools and techniques to help improve the efficiency and quality of patient care, sustain patient satisfaction and lower the cost of care.

"The course is open to clinicians, nonclinicians or anyone interested in redefining the way they deliver and improve patient care," said Chase Coffey, MD, MS, medical director of Clinical Transformation at Cedars-Sinai. "In our training, physicians naturally learn the Lean management methodology, especially as it relates to problem-solving patients’ medical problems.

"Physicians, though, have never applied that type of thinking to the system within which they work. With this course, we are providing all employees with the tools and techniques they can apply to certain aspects of their jobs, and helping physicians use their existing skills to improve how they care for patients."

Lean is a series of principles and methods developed by the Japanese manufacturing industry — most notably Toyota — that focuses on improving workflow, eliminating wasteful spending and improving customer satisfaction. In recent years, healthcare and other industries have utilized Lean thinking or methodology, said Coffey, a member of the White Belt course planning team.

"The course teaches a rational, analytic approach that fosters team building and critical thinking," said Karl Wittnebel, MD, who has participated in the course. "These tools help Cedars-Sinai leverage its greatest asset — its employees — to make critical improvements in efficiency and quality."

While similar courses in the community can cost up to $600, the White Belt course is free to physicians and employees. Two sessions are available:

  • Friday, Oct. 16, 8 a.m.-noon in the Human Resources/Organization Development Center, 50 N. La Cienega Blvd., Suite 210
  • Friday, Nov. 13, 8 a.m.-noon, also in the HR/OD Center

Those who complete the course will receive a certificate, and Cedars-Sinai will offer up to four continuing medical education credits.

After completing the White Belt, a second step in Lean management system training is a Yellow Belt course, which Cedars-Sinai also offers, Coffey said. This course is a more intensive two-day program that expands on Lean principles and skills so that students can complete a quality improvement project.

More information, including registration instructions, is available on the Intranet.