According to the OECD, "A significant share of health spending in OECD countries is at best ineffective and at worst, wasteful. Solutions exist." (OECD, 2017).
It is also stated that "One in ten patients in OECD countries is unnecessarily harmed at the point of care.” (OECD, 2017), beside the fact that “More than 10% of hospital expenditure goes to correcting preventable medical mistakes or infections that people catch in hospitals across a range of OECD countries." (OECD, 2017).
However, as mentioned initially there are solutions. "Actions to tackle wasteful spending are needed in the delivery of care, the management and organisation of health services, and in the governance of health care systems." (OECD, 2017)
At a time that public budgets are under pressure worldwide, it is alarming the fact that one-fifth of health spending does not provide minimal or quality contribution to good health outcomes, and for all these reasons applying the Lean principles to the provision of health care, beside being innovating will improve incrementally the services provided to the patient at the same time that the wasteful spending decreasing.
Source: OECD 2017, Tackling Wasteful Spending on Health.
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Henry Otero, MD is a Medical Oncologist and faculty member of the Virginia Mason Institute. He has completed the Virginia Mason Production System Certification and is a Kaizen Fellow graduate. Dr. Otero has led many process improvement events at Virginia Mason and has participated in both clinic and hospital facility redesign efforts including the implementation of VMPS concepts to the Cancer Institute. His provider perspective recognizes the challenges and solutions when implementing VMPS amongst provider groups. Dr. Otero received his medical degree from Michigan State University-College of Human Medicine with a residency in Internal Medicine at the University of Virginia and a fellowship in medical oncology at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center.Hematology & Oncology, Virginia Mason