Six Sigma is a highly effective strategy for running a business. In the healthcare industry, it can be quite challenging to implement these strategies owing to the constantly changing business scenario, under staffing, lack of funds and leadership. But implementing Six Sigma can be highly beneficial in this Industry just like any other. Though Healthcare is primarily dependant on doctors, there a number of other highly dependent processes and work together to make modern-day healthcare possible. In order to analyze how Six Sigma can benefit the healthcare industry, first, we shall look at the challenges faced by Six Sigma while being implemented in Healthcare.
• The number of consumers is only going to increase in vast numbers over the next few years as there is going to be a large population in the age group of 60 to 80. Therefore there is no threat of the scenario changing.
• Lack of finances in this sector has also impeded the implementation of Six Sigma. But with the clear boom of the healthcare firms in the coming years, there is no limit to the potential of Six Sigma in this domain.
• Staffing shortage leads to overworking of the employees present. This makes them hesitant to adapt to large changes in their working methods. It is also generally considered as not an attractive place to work.
We need to note that Six Sigma is basically a methodology that can help reduce process costs and perform processes in the most efficient way to achieve the best possible results. Therefore, this is the best way to combat all the above-mentioned problems in the healthcare industry. This can also play a major role in drastically decreasing medical errors and reduce the cost of healthcare services.
Now, what is Six Sigma?
It is a process used to eliminate defects and achieve better results by continuously evaluating your processes and formulating better strategies. It provides a framework to identify processes that can be improved to better address your client’s requirements. Let us look at how these frameworks can be applied to a healthcare industry.
1. Six Sigma focuses on variation. This is very important in the healthcare industry as achieving consistent results is of high importance to the reputation of the institution. Therefore physicians may be needed to analyze the data available and to identify the best method to employ a procedure. This can bring substantial improvements in clinical processes.
2. There are many healthcare chains present today such as pharmaceuticals, hospitals, clinics etc. These have become possible through the consolidation of various firms in the industry and therefore need to stabilize their organizational systems.
3. It encourages professional to give their best. Nurses, Doctors, Managers, Pharmacists, all perform their tasks in an organized and orderly fashion. This creates an easy interface between the various professionals thereby helping them perform better.
Having seen the advantages of implementing Six Sigma in the Healthcare industry, it is obvious that it is highly beneficial to provide better and consistent health care to the population. It also encourages all healthcare professionals to work together as a team. This gives a friendly and trustworthy environment to patients and other co-workers.