Integrating Lean into Your Facility Design

Just as JWA Consulting pioneered the implementation of Lean in healthcare, we lead the application of Lean to the design of healthcare facilities.

The JWA team follows a process called Integrated Facility Design  (IFD) that systematically applies Lean principles and concurrently integrates the expertise of all stakeholders—patients and families, hospital administrators, physicians and surgeons, nurses, staff, the architect, the general contractor, and Lean experts—to achieve breakthrough improvements when compared to traditional design.

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The Benefits of Lean Experience

During the IFD process, the JWA team applies its deep expertise in Lean principles in the following ways:

  • Guiding principle development aligns all stakeholders to Lean principles such as line-of-sight, continuous flow, work cells, point-of-use, and others.
  • Workflow analysis using the seven flows of healthcare improves unit adjacency, reducing wasteful transport and walking time,
  • Cycle time and takt time analysis determines the optimal number of rooms and beds, reducing costly square footage compared to typical design estimates.
  • 5S (workplace organization) and “activity follows” determines the optimal layout of furniture, equipment, and supplies in rooms and workspaces.
  • Standardized work planning establishes optimal work sequences and timing so providers, nurses, and staff can make the most efficient use of the new layout once the facility opens.
  • Visual management principles define locations and content for the visibility walls that are essential for practicing Lean management once the new facility opens.

The Phases

The IFD process moves from your organization’s values, beliefs, and principles down to chairs, drawers, and lights through five phases:

  • Project management and governance
  • Conceptual design at the systems level
  • Functional design at the value stream level
  • Detailed design at the operational level
  • Standard work development for operating in the new design

Where IFD Has Been Applied

The JWA team has applied IFD or elements of IFD in the U.S., Europe, and the Middle East to fulfill the following needs:

  • Hospital master planning
  • Integrated project delivery
  • New hospital design
  • Hospital renovation
  • Department layout improvement