Team-Tested Practices
health care workers wheeling a patient on a gurney into surgery

How one team figured out how to clear its surgery backlog.

Create a Surgery Wait List and Serve More Patients

Faced with an unwieldy number of patients waiting for surgery, a Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery department made a wait list for patients who needed to be scheduled for surgery. To help with the new chore, they assigned an employee to manage it. The results were immediate as the team saw a drop from 150 patients waiting for surgery per month to about 50, and complaints dropped to 0. With no backlog, the full-time employee handles other work and the team has openings in the schedule to accommodate emergency patients.

What Got Results

  • Creating a wait list for patients who need to schedule surgeries
  • Assigning a full-time employee to manage the wait list
  • Using openings in the schedule to squeeze in emergency patients
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