Building and Sustaining a Culture of Quality

Concurrent Session

M10 - Lean Six Sigma in Healthcare Labs: Unclaimed Opportunity

Monday, April 30
12:15 PM - 1:15 PM
Location: WSCC 615-617

Level: Basic

Division: Healthcare Division

This interactive session will share lessons learned from the implementation of Lean Six Sigma in the healthcare laboratory, including real-life examples using case studies. In keeping with this year's theme of "The Innovation of You," the presentation will also discuss how the healthcare laboratory is an unclaimed opportunity for better patient care. With the multitude of challenges facing healthcare systems, the time is now to claim the opportunity that healthcare system labs can provide for quality improvement. The case studies will review phlebotomy swarm or sweeps, which brings inpatient morning blood collections closer to one-piece flow. Although this project takes place among healthcare laboratory teams, the presentation will be familiar and of interest to anyone who has had blood collected for lab testing, and lessons learned from Lean Six Sigma application will be relevant and practical for all industries.

Learning Objectives:

Katie L. Castree


Operations Excellence Manager
Accumen Inc
St Louis, Missouri

Katie Castree is an accomplished young professional in the healthcare industry. After obtaining her bachelor of science degree in community health at the University of Illinois, she obtained her master of health administration degree at Saint Louis University. She then went on to work at Hospital Sisters Health System in Illinois for four years, during which time she completed internal Green Belt and Black Belt training and became an ASQ Certified Six Sigma Black Belt (CSSBB). As a performance improvement specialist for one of the healthcare system's divisions, she completed projects focused on streamlining internal processes, managing patient visit turnaround time, improving provider documentation, increasing revenue, and improving quality of care. Moving up to the senior performance improvement specialist for the system's medical group, she then managed a project portfolio of $1 million annually in improvements, led the Lean Six Sigma program deployment, and trained 55 Green Belts and 40 Black Belts. Since 2016, Castree has been an operations excellence manager at Accumen, a healthcare consulting company that partners with hospitals and healthcare systems to create high-performing laboratories. There she leads client organizations' improvement projects in laboratory quality, service, and productivity. She is an involved member of ASQ, frequently presenting at national conferences. At the local level, she serves the St. Louis Section of ASQ as an officer of the Leadership Committee as well as on the annual Conference Planning Committee.


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Patrice Griffith


Director, Quality, Safety and Outcomes Education
University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center
Flower Mound, Texas

Patrice Griffith is the Director, Quality, Safety and Outcomes Education at University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center where she is responsible for Quality Improvement activities and education for the organization’s Health Systems, Academic Affairs and Business Affairs.
Previously, she worked for Abbott Laboratories as the Quality Systems Manager for a medical laboratory manufacturing facility and as a laboratory mentor in Tanzania.
Patrice received her MBA in Quality and Industrial Management at the University of Dallas, a B.S. in Medical Technology at Michigan State University and an A.S. in Biomedical Electronics.
She is currently serves as a judge and on the training faculty for the Quality Texas Foundation and serves as an alumni examiner for the Malcolm Baldrige Nation Quality Award.
Patrice is a registered Medical Technologist (MT ASCP) and hold certifications (ASQ) as a Quality Auditor and Manager of Quality and Organizational Excellence.


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M10 - Lean Six Sigma in Healthcare Labs: Unclaimed Opportunity


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