2018 Annual Healthcare Symposium: Lean: A Safer Tomorrow

  • Friday, May 18, 2018
  • 7:45 AM - 4:00 PM
  • Henry Ford Health Systems Bloomfield 6777 W Maple Rd, West Bloomfield Township, MI 48322
  • 0


Registration is closed

Thank you to HFHS for sponsoring our venue! We are still looking for sponsors for breakfast and lunch. Please email Lauren if you are interested at coordinator@michiganlean.org!

Tentative Agenda: 

Registration with Continental Breakfast 7:45-8:30 am

Welcome (MLC and HFHS): 8:30-8:45 am

1st Keynote: 8:45-10:00 am (1 hour plus Q&A)

1st Breakout sessions: 10:10-11:10 am

Lunch and informal networking 11:10-12:10

2nd Breakout sessions: 12:15-1:15

3rd Breakout session 1:20-2:20

Break: 2:20-2:35

2nd keynote: 2:35-3:45 (1 hour plus Q&A)

Wrap up: 3:45-4:00 

Parking is free in the visitors lot. Please park farther away to leave close spots for patients and carpool if possible. Either park on the top of the hill in staff parking or in the last row of the visitor lot.

Registration includes continental breakfast and lunch.

Keynote Bios:

Lynn M. Torossian, President and CEO of Henry Ford West Bloomfield Hospital, is a respected leader and seasoned healthcare professional with nearly 30 years of experience in multiple organizations and areas, including finance, revenue cycle, managed care, physician organizations and operations.

At Henry Ford West Bloomfield, Torossian provides executive leadership for the 191-bed, $360 million facility. Henry Ford West Bloomfield Hospital delivers a comprehensive health care experience that includes mind, body and spirit as essential elements in the healing process. Her oversight includes strategic planning, business development, physician recruitment and hospital operations. 

Torossian holds a bachelor's degree in business from Eastern Michigan University and is a certified public accountant.  She is board-certified in healthcare management as a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives. 

Torossian is a council member of the American Hospital Association Section for Metropolitan Hospitals. She is on the board of directors for Rose Hill Center in Holly, Michigan; and the board of the Huron Valley State Bank, as well as active in the community.

A Milford resident, she is married with two adult children. 
Julia Swanson, Vice President, Performance Analytics and Improvement, leads a team that is responsible for effective organizational performance measurement, review, and project execution is occurring through strategy deployment, comprehensive analytical and electronic data warehouse solutions, performance improvement techniques, and an enterprise wide project management office.  She has 23 years of experience in improving integrated health care operations with expertise in strategy deployment, measurement, organizational performance review, disciplined execution and identifying operational interdependencies in order to bridge silos and levels in organizations to increase efficiency and effectiveness and drive results.

She was last the Administrator for Innovation and Quality at Henry Ford West Bloomfield Hospital where she was responsible for the performance of the hospital's quality oversight system including risk prevention, infection control, regulatory readiness, monitoring and measuring performance, strategic planning, and the coordination of hospital-wide innovation and improvement efforts.  In her time at the hospital, she was very proud of the accomplishments of opening a new hospital on time and on budget and achieving successful accreditation three days after opening.  Julia led the team at Henry Ford West Bloomfield Hospital to ISO Certification within one year of opening the hospital.  

Prior to this position, Julia worked throughout Henry Ford Health System as a project manager with a focus on process improvement and new initiative implementations.  She has a Bachelors of Industrial Engineering from the University of Michigan and a Masters of Health Services Administration from the University of Michigan.

Julia serves on the Oakland University Pawley Lean Institute Advisory Council and is a former senior examiner for the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award.

Breakout Session Options: 

Session 1

  • Lean Daily Management
  • What Practicing Improvement Kata and Coaching Kata Taught me about Humility
  • Code Stroke?

Session 2

  • The Skinny on Lean and Human Factors Engineering It’s Not Just Another Fad
  • HFHS Continuum of Virtual Care Applications People Process Technology
  • Using a Data and your Lean Management Habits Leader Standard Work to Drive Improvement in a Clinical Setting

Session 3

  • Lean Daily Management
  • Reducing Risk and Variation Through Patient Engagement
  • Operational Journey to High Reliability
  • Dedication Anticipation Transformation Lean Tools and Methodologies to Sustain Change

Lean Daily Management

Presenter - Ben Halliwill

Senior Management Engineer

Henry Ford West Bloomfield Hospital

Ben Halliwill is a Senior Management Engineer at Henry Ford West Bloomfield Hospital.  Ben provides operations consulting on a per request basis to leaders at the West Bloomfield Hospital. These projects consist of business, engineering, quality improvement, and project management. During his time at Henry Ford Health System, Ben has assisted in the EPIC go-live(s) at multiple business units and has led multi-disciplinary process improvement initiatives at both the organizational and unit levels. Ben is trained in LEAN, Six Sigma, and PMP methodologies and holds a certificate in IT Service Management. Ben holds a BA in Health Administration from Central Michigan University.

Co-Presenter - Abby Dalton

Management Engineer

Henry Ford West Bloomfield Hospital

Abby Dalton is a Management Engineer at Henry Ford West Bloomfield Hospital, where she works with the leaders across the health system on process improvement projects. In the past year Abby has co-lead the Lean Daily Management program implementation with Ben Halliwill to over 30 departments across West Bloomfield Hospital. In 2017, Abby and Ben were awarded the Quality Expo Award in the category of ‘Efficient’ through Henry Ford Health System. Abby has her Masters in Social Work from the University of Michigan and her Bachelor of Arts in Social Work from Hope College.


Lean Daily Management (LDM) is a project that engages frontline staff in a daily process of collecting data on key metrics identified by each department to conduct continuous improvement projects to become a highly reliable organization. The aim of this project at West Bloomfield Hospital is to engage every frontline staff member in the hospital in improving operational and quality metrics in their department through daily huddles as a department and weekly gemba walks with Executive Leadership to eliminate barriers. LDM is ‘live’ throughout the ED, CDU, all inpatient units, OR, and Radiology. Through daily tracking, frontline staff drive quality metrics through identifying gaps in their daily processes, addressing these gaps in patient care in real-time, and developing tests of change to eliminate these gaps to provide efficient and effective care to every patient every time.

The presentation will include a PPT and "GEMBA" walk to highlight real time examples for what is being worked on in the hospital. This will be an interactive session where they can ask questions regarding design, implementation, and the process.

Targeted Audience – Intermediate - Understanding of basic lean tools (metrics overview, run chart, pareto chart). Building a system to engage front line staff to drive performance improvement.  

Participant Level – 40% lecture/overview. 60% interactive audience participation through group discussion and GEMBA walks.

What Practicing Improvement Kata and Coaching Kata Taught me about Humility

Presenter – Dorsey Sherman
Senior Process Excellence Consultant

Mercy Health

Dorsey Sherman is healthcare professional with over 12 years of experience in operations and continuous improvement. For the last six years, she has been working at Mercy Health Muskegon as a Senior Process Excellence Consultant. Dorsey has a B.A. in Economics from Michigan State University and a MHSA from the University of Michigan School of Public Health. Most recently, she has been working with the Perioperative, Case Management and Labor & Delivery Departments using the Improvement Kata and Coaching Kata methods to improve patient satisfaction, lower infection rates and improve communication across the continuum of care.


In May of 2016, after attending a three-day training, I began practicing Toyota Kata. I fell in love with the routine and dove deep into the technical aspects, trying to understand the kata for process analysis, how to write a challenge the right way and how to experiment correctly.

Despite an intellectual understanding that learning happens in the ‘zone of uncertainty,’ I was actively seeking the zone of certainty.  I wanted to create the perfect storyboard. As I went into a coaching role, I applied the same approach, how do I teach the IK method so that learners got their story boards just right and achieved results? When I transitioned to second coach, I often watched the coach practicing and afterwards told them what they could do differently. How they need to turn their statements into questions. How they could be more effective as a coach by listening more than talking. Yet I wasn't listening either.

I just returned from KataCon4 in Atlanta and again, I went seeking answers, but came home with more questions. There is no one right way, and by telling leaders and coaches how they needed to do practice Toyota Kata differently, I was striving for the right answer instead of thinking about the skill level of the person I was coaching and what experiment I could do to try and increase it. While humility is a key tenet of lean leadership, I realized for the first time how my need to do it right is the opposite of humility.

Targeted Audience – Intermediate - Some understanding of lean principles will be helpful to have as a foundation. Also, someone who has practiced continuous improvement and been able to reflect on how it can be done more effectively.

Learning objectives: personal reflection on how you are representing the philosophy of Lean leadership.

Learning activities: Group discussion. What does a humble leader look like? What are the behaviors you would expect to see? What does skill development look like in your organization and how does lack of humility become an obstacle to developing the skills of those around us?

Participant Level – Group discussion 30% (20 minutes)

Code Stroke

Presenter - Greg Boos

Principle Management Engineer (Contingent)

Henry Ford Health System

Greg has 30 years of healthcare experience in IT and PI. He is a Six Sigma Black Belt with additional training and experience in Lean. He has spent the last 14 years in promoting Lean, teaching Lean principles and conducting team events.


No one likes to hear the words Code Stroke, but when you do, you know it is serious and warrants immediate attention. Our team has been instrumental in improving all of the processes involved when a Code Stroke is called to improve the outcome and quality of life of the patient. Our multi-disciplinary team used a variety of Lean principles to not only meet national standards for Code Stroke patients but to surpass them and get awarded Gold Status from the American Heart Association. The objective of this talk is to share our journey and struggles by showing all of the techniques we used to achieve our sustained results.

Targeted Audience - Beginner (swim lane mapping, visual signaling, error proofing), Intermediate (value stream mapping), and Advanced (A3 reporting, sustainability)

Participant Level - Interactive session for group discussion (15-20%)

The Skinny on Lean and Human Factors Engineering - It’s Not Just Another Fad

Presenter - Patrice Tims

Director, Quality, Regulatory Affairs, and Clinical Excellence

McLaren Healthcare, Karmanos Cancer Institute

Graduate of Michigan State University, College of Nursing; Masters of Science Administration, concentration in Healthcare. Thirty plus years healthcare experience including clinical specialties in oncology and operating room. Twenty plus years experience in quality and safety. Certified Patient Safety Officer and Certified Professional in Patient Safety.

Co-Presenter - Vera Szram-Senyk

Quality Improvement Specialist

McLaren Healthcare, Karmanos Cancer Institute

Graduate of University of Alberta, Bachelor of Science Occupational Therapy; Masters of Science Administration, concentration in Healthcare. Lean Healthcare certification, University of Michigan. Thirty plus years healthcare experience in various settings across the continuum. Applied lean principles to successfully reduce patient wait times for therapy, increase volumes, increase revenue and reduce expenses.


  • Prevention of Error, Designing for Safety - Human Factors Violations and Engineering to Prevent Harm.
  • Understand Human Factors Engineering and its application in healthcare through everyday examples and healthcare case study presentations. By combining human factors engineering and lean principles organizations can reduce harm and create a safer environment for patient, employees and visitors.
  • Through use of short videos, gain insight in regards to situational awareness and change blindness.
  • Identify error reduction strategies through the use of examples and application of lean principles

Targeted Audience – Beginner

Participant Level – 30% - learners will engage in video exercises as well as group exercises and discussion

HFHS Continuum of Virtual Care Applications – People, Process, Technology

Presenter - Courtney Stevens

Director, Virtual Care

Henry Ford Health System

Courtney Stevens, the Director of Virtual Care for Henry Ford Health System, develops the strategy and standards for telehealth expansion throughout Henry Ford Health System’s continuum of care. She started at HFHS over 10 years ago in Process Improvement as a management engineer, where she has applied her industrial engineering and project management skills to various projects to aid in health system integration and alignment.  Courtney was integral in the development and deployment of various system-wide (over 24,000 team members) trainings, as well as a standard system approach to leadership rounding. Courtney has a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering from Western Michigan University and Masters of Science in Engineering Management from Wayne State University.


The future of healthcare includes bigger changes ahead, this includes a shift towards value-based care and redesigning the way we think about how care is delivered.  Virtual care or telehealth has become an effective strategy to foster service innovation.  Henry Ford Health System (HFHS) has developed standards and operating procedures to make implementation of virtual care programs seamless for stakeholders.  By completing various virtual pilot programs, including both primary care and specialty virtual encounters, HFHS has been able to increase volume and participating specialties with positive patient and provider results. 

In the beginning stages, HFHS worked with early clinical adopters to develop care redesign opportunities, standards and streamline implementation.  Our strategy included an in-depth needs assessment and standardization across the health system and medical group.  Some operational and process components include a virtual care organizational structure as well as standard project work plan, intake request application, equipment kit, EMR build criteria, metrics, and review process.

As HFHS virtual care program matured, the deployment and adoption of virtual care has fostered over 40% growth year over year in both synchronous virtual video visits/consults and asynchronous/store-and-forward encounters.  Through project management insights and successful pilot experiences, the team was able to use lessons learned and PDCA (Plan, Do, Check, Act) methodology to fine tune the virtual care implementation and structure to support adoption and scalability in program deployment.  In addition, opportunities for improvement and key factors to HFHS success will be shared. 

Targeted Audience - Intermediate - This presentation will share examples of successfully applying LEAN fundamentals and tactics in the introduction and application of virtual care/telemedicine within a healthcare organization.

Participant Level - 15% - Group discussion and interaction

Using a Data and your Lean Management Habits (Leader Standard Work) to Drive Improvement in a Clinical Setting

Presenter - Terry Donahue Cousins, MT (ASCP)

Manager, Continuous Improvement

Munson Healthcare

Terry Donahue Cousins believes that she has one of the best jobs in Healthcare. Terry is the Manager of Continuous Improvement at Munson Medical Center, a 391-bed nonprofit hospital serving as Northern Michigan's regional referral center and the largest of the 9 hospitals in the Munson Healthcare System in Traverse City, MI. Keeping patients at the center of the work they do, and following the guiding principles of safety and quality, she and her teammates work collaboratively with the healthcare team to improve the care that they deliver or the products or services they provide. Terry has worked in healthcare since Reagan was president - those of you who are old enough can do the math. She graduated from Michigan State University and started her career as a Registered Medical Technologist before switching to performance improvement work.  Terry has a Certificate of Mastery in Process Redesign and completed the Lean Healthcare Certificate Program with the University of Michigan College of Engineering Center for Professional Development. Terry appreciates being surrounded by people who want to make things just a little better every day.


This presentation is a case study depicting a Service Line Director and her use of a Lean Management System, especially Leader Standard Work, and data in order to drive improvement throughout the Service Line. By applying Leader Standard Work this leader was able to improve the value delivered to the customer. For her, Leader Standard Work is a combination of daily/weekly communication, rounding, huddles, knowledge sharing, and visual management that allows a leader to:

  • align and support the work of the organization
  • develop direct reports
  • support problem solving

This case study walks through the data that she uses to inform leader standard work and additionally to drive the team's improvement efforts.

Learning Objectives:

  • Participants will understand the benefits of Leader Standard Work (LSW) in support of Lean culture and see an example of a LSW tool
  • Participants will see a data analytic tool and examples of data stratification for problem solving
  • Participants will apply critical thinking to design inquiry questions for problem solving

These objectives will be met through facilitated discussion and using Lean Management System tools.

Targeted Audience - Intermediate - This presentation would also be good for those that have already embarked on a lean journey and would like to understand more about the power of driving and sustaining improvement through the use of data and a Lean Management System

Participant Level - Approximately 40% - 45% of the session will be audience participation:

~ 5 minutes of small group data review and large group data analysis (presenter will use the analytic tool)

~ 20 minutes of small group work - applying Lean Management System tools to the case study scenario

(i.e.- creating questions for a daily huddle, status sheet exchange, or visual management for a huddle board)

Reducing Risk and Variation Through Patient Engagement

Presenter - Max Quero

Senior Improvement Specialist

Spectrum Health

Max graduated Magna Cum Laude with a degree in Industrial Engineering from Kettering University. He obtained his MBA from Grand Valley State University in 2007, has a Lean Manufacturing Certificate from the University of Michigan and a Supply Chain Certificate from Michigan State University. As a Lean practitioner, Max has served as an Operations Engineer, Quality Manager, Operations Manager and Materials Manager. After 17 years of a successful career in manufacturing Max decided to pursue his passion of utilizing Lean Principles to improve the lives of the people of his community, thus transitioning to Health Care.

Co-Presenter - Michele VanPatten

Lead Improvement Specialist

Spectrum Health

Michele is a Lead Improvement Specialist in the Process Improvement Division of Spectrum Health in Grand Rapids, MI.  As a registered nurse, she earned her Master’s degree in Nursing (MSN), and is certified as a Professional in Health Care Quality (CPHQ). As a Lean Practitioner for the past six five years, Michele has been involved in projects in Referral Management, Chronic Disease Management, Access, Pediatric & Adult Ambulatory Specialties, and Primary Health, and Addiction Medicine: Opioids.


Using Kata principles to improve Hypertension in Primary Care

- Percentage of patients with controlled Hypertension was at 68% with 90th percentile across the nation is 75.34%.

- Teams were formed in 10 Primary Care offices to begin analyzing processes and workflows and identifying root causes.

- Education and engagement were the first barriers: Teams were educated and coached in the following topics:

  • Waste identification.
  • Problem solving skills (Affintizing, 5-Y's, root cause analysis, A3 thinking).
  • Visual management.
  • Continuous improvement cycle.
  • Encounter by encounter tracking.
  •  Pareto Analysis.

- Introduction of visual management boards.

- Second Blood Pressure re-check was identified as the leading metric to drive the desired outcomes.

- Implementation of real time tracking.

- Visual indicators were created by the teams as reminders to re-check blood pressures.

- Improvement efforts yielded an increase in the percentage of BP re-checks from 26% to 96% which resulted in an improvement in total patients with controlled blood pressure from 58% to 77.34%.

Targeted Audience - Lean (process improvement) practitioners, health care leaders, healthcare staff. Learning Objectives: foundational team building, team engagement, barrier busting through problem solving (PDCA) coaching, yokoten.

Participant Level – 25% - 50%

Operational Journey to High Reliability

Presenter - Sandra Smith

Manager, Performance Improvement

Henry Ford Health System

A senior leader with 20+ years of experience leading enterprise projects with a focus on improving the value of healthcare through improved outcomes delivered at a lower cost.  Lean and Six Sigma certified through automotive and health-care consulting firms, Sandra is a strategic initiative leader comfortable working in dynamic situations dealing with large amounts of data and information to build a clear case for change.

With broad experience in stakeholder engagement, change management and scalable implementation Sandra has a keen interest in building enterprise project management infrastructure to deliver key projects with clearly defined value.

Co-Presenter - Josh Letourneau

Senior Management Engineer

Henry Ford Health System

Josh is a certified Six Sigma Black Belt with a clear passion for healthcare improvement.  With recent experience in revenue cycle administration performance improvement, Josh is a champion for accelerating the directionally correct approach to improvement across healthcare organizations.


In highly reliable healthcare organizations standardization is necessary but not sufficient for achieving resilient and reliable outcomes, whether they be administrative, clinical or a combination of both.  Over the course of this highly interactive presentation, participants will hear about one healthcare utilization management’s team journey to a more highly reliable team through a culture changing combination of work re-design, standardized work instruction development and deployment, and outcome sustainability through visible and actionable operational dashboards.  Outcomes achieved included a 35-40% improvement on claim denial productivity for staff.

Targeted Audience – Beginner - Standardized work instructions are a basic and accessible knowledge/skill-set to learn. Intermediate - Operational dashboard development through power pivots or powerview are more advanced options using a storyboarding process that integrates voice of the customer feedback.

Participant Level – 75% - Standardized work instruction development; interactive operational dashboard storyboarding process

Dedication Anticipation Transformation Lean Tools and Methodologies to Sustain Change

Presenter - Raechel Anne Rowland RN, BSN, CLSSGB, CLSSBB, CPHQ

Lean Practitioner

Ascension Borgess Health

Raechel Rowland is a Lean Practitioner affiliated with Ascension Borgess Health. Rowland has 30 years of experience in clinical nursing with expertise in a variety of roles including Performance Excellence, Obstetrics, Regulatory, Quality, Medical Staffing, and Clinical Informatics.  Rowland has a passion for quality, patient safety / experience, employee engagement, and cultural transformation. She is known for her commitment to continuous process improvement. Rowland is pursuing her MSN with Aspen University. She recently became a certified Lean Six Sigma Black Belt through Villanova University and Certified Professional in Healthcare Quality through the National Association of Healthcare Quality. Rowland is pursuing Certified Professional in Patient Safety. She is a Team STEPPS Master Trainer and a Certified American Red Cross Nurse. 

We will discuss how utilizing Lean Six Sigma methodologies will enhance the experience for health care associates and patients directly leading to improved quality and safety outcomes.  The learner will gain an overview of cultural transformation, customer focus being key to continuous improvement, eliminating non-value added activity returns the gift of time and resources, and guided instruction on developing A3 diagrams, run/ pareto charts, fishbone diagrams, and process flow maps. Additional resources including accessing free templates will be provided. The session will be a compilation of lecture, open-discussion, break-out activities, and short video(s) to assist all learning styles in the synthesis of the course content.

Learning objectives:
1) Gain an understanding of cultural transformation born through customer focused care.
2) Identify non-value added activity and resource alignment strategies.
3) Develop basic skills in data collection and display to facilitate enterprise alignment

Targeted Audience – Beginner - This session will be a basic introduction to the application of lean methodologies. Intermediate - This session will be a review of the application of lean methodologies.

Participant Level – 25% of the session will involve audience participation through group discussion and hands-on exercise(s).

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