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Lean Streamlines Patient Pathway – Zero Boarders in South Tyneside

21st January 2014

ZB2Lean processes bring 18% improvement in ward discharges in one month

Successful patient management is central to a positive patient experience and effectively managing hospital costs. Inconsistent ways of working across wards can lead to patients staying on wards outside the speciality they have been admitted to or to the length of a patient’s stay being increased unnecessarily.  Patients experiencing these issues are sometimes referred to as ‘boarders’ and the issue of boarders was something the Hospital Care Transformational Task Team (TTT) at South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust felt needed to be addressed.

The team set up a Lean improvement project to identify opportunities to maximise efficiency and standardisation across five ward areas to ensure that any patient’s stay would no longer be extended beyond their care need. The team set a project aim to reach a future state of zero boarders – based on one boarder per day over 12 months the team calculated this could bring possible savings of almost £55,000 a year.  As a result of this improvement project the team from South Tyneside attended the national Lean Healthcare Awards 2013 where they accepted The People’s Choice award.

Read the full case study below for more details.