Process and Quality improvement in healthcare using the Model for Improvement, Lean, Six Sigma, Lean Six Sigma, and Person-centred improvement sciences. Enabling you to practice as a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt within the Health System.
The seeds of process and quality improvement were sown by many innovators but Toyota is credited as being the forefather of the Lean process improvement methodology as we know it today. Simply put, for healthcare staff, Lean means finding the time to do the work you have to do, in the time you have to do it. Lean thinking is not typically associated with healthcare, due to its association with the motor industry. But the principles of Lean management can, in fact, work in health care in much the same way they do in other industries. Internationally, many healthcare organisations are successfully using Lean thinking to streamline processes, reduce cost, and most importantly improve the quality, experience of, and timely delivery of services to patients. Six Sigma simply means a measure of quality that strives for near perfection. Six Sigma is a disciplined, data-driven approach and methodology for eliminating defects and unwanted variation in any process – and works particularly well in use with Lean. Person-centredness is, in ascendancy as a particular type of approach and culture that applies to everyone in the organisation, staff, patients and families alike. Person-centredness in healthcare is understood as the practice of forming and fostering healthful relationships between service users, families and care providers with the intent of improving and innovating the experience of healthcare for all.
When applied rigorously and throughout an entire healthcare organisation, Lean, Six Sigma and Person-centred improvement methodologies can have a positive impact on patient, relative and staff experience of care, and on outcomes. While sceptics are right when they say, “Patients are not cars” ,healthcare is, in fact, delivered in extraordinarily complex organisations, with thousands of interacting processes. Many aspects of Lean and Six Sigma methodologies therefore can and do apply to the processes of delivering care. Our UCD programme Graduates have applied Lean Six Sigma and Person-centred approaches successfully to improve experiences and outcomes for staff and patients in areas as diverse as Stroke Thrombolysis, Stroke Therapy, Patient Scheduling, Procurement, Data coding, ward and unit design, Rehabilitation, Hip Fracture Pathways, Pharmacy, Pathology, Radiology, Cardiology and Community Health.
You can view the course brochure here.
This interdisciplinary programme builds on the Professional Certificate Process Improvement in Health Systems and is designed to prepare the student for implementing and leading on a process or quality improvement throughout their healthcare organisation. It will lay the groundwork for building a healthcare transformation by training the student in researching, implementing, innovating and leading on change in their own organisation and in Lean,Six Sigma and Person-centred methodologies. The programme currently welcomes students from over 50 healthcare institutions across all hospital groups and Community Healthcare Organisations in Ireland.
Integral to our approach is to synergise Lean, Six Sigma and Person-centred approaches to process and quality improvement and to ensure that our programmes align with the principles of person-centredness and contribute to Person-centred Cultures.
The ECTS credits earned contribute to the credit requirements of the MSc Leadership, Innovation and Management for Healthcare (90 ECTS credits).
The training is currently delivered via blended learning and will be delivered by a virtual learning platform in Trimester 1.
Indicative learning outcomes: on completion the student will be able to:
"a unique opportunity to obtain a recognised qualification in Lean in Healthcare. The programme was challenging and very rewarding as I gained an in-depth knowledge of the theory and principles of Lean Six Sigma methodologies and undertook research on implementing change."
"The confidence I gained from the programme has assisted my facilitating and leading a multi-disciplinary team in systematically removing non value add healthcare waste and reducing variation in some very complex problems. All skills learnt on the programme were easily translatable to hospital life and I thoroughly enjoyed listening and participating with my fellow healthcare leaders in the classroom."
"I have realised the far reaching applications and everyday uses of Lean Six Sigma methodologies. This effective and motivational learning experience was further enhanced with the supportive mentorship of my assigned supervisor"
"Since completing the Graduate Diploma I have been appointed in a Quality Improvement role within my organisation and have successfully led a number of large scale and small scale change and quality initiatives."
"The availability of my supervisor enabled me to discuss any issues as they arose to ensure my improvement project stayed on track over the course of the programme"
Healthcare Professionals should have completed the Professional Certificate Process Improvement in Health Systems or equivalent with UCD or another accredited provider to Level 8.
Applications for this Programme are open and you can apply at the link HERE
If taking this Programme or a component module as part of the MSc Leadership, Innovation and Management, you can contact the MSc Programe Director, Professor Martin McNamara directly for advise on module choice firstname.lastname@example.org
The fees for your programme can be found at the links below. Search using your major code (the four-digit code beginning with 'X' which can be found in the key information box on this page).
Please note that UCD fees are subject to change annually. The fees shown include the student centre levy which must be paid by all students.
If the fees for your programme are being paid by a third party (full or partial), please ensure your funding organisation/sponsor/hospital contacts email@example.com. Please note this is not a student facing email address.
If you have any queries about your fees, please contact the Student Desk:
Please note that all applicants are required to pay the €50 application fee. Your application cannot be processed fully unless the application fee has been paid.
More information about fees is available on the UCD website at the link below:
Recognised Prior Learning (RPL) applications must be submitted online through your SISWeb account.
There are two instances in which you can apply to have recognised prior learning taken into account when applying for a programme in UCD.
1. RPL for admission to a UCD programme
If you are a prospective student seeking admission to UCD and you do not meet the required admissions criteria as set down for a particular programme of study in UCD, you may apply to be admitted based on prior learning.
2. RPL for exemption from a module or modules on a UCD programme
If you have been accepted onto a UCD programme and wish to have credit transferred towards the requirements of the UCD programme of study, you may apply for RPL from a module or modules.
When applying for RPL, please note the following:
TO APPLY FOR RPL PLEASE CLICK ON THE FOLLOWING LINK: https://sisweb.ucd.ie/usis/W_HU_MENU.P_PUBLISH?p_tag=APPLY
Please read the UCD Policy on Recognition of Prior Learning at this link: UCD Policy on Recognition of Prior Learning
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Teeling SP, Coetzee H, Phillips M, McKiernan M, Ní She É, Igoe A (2019) Reducing risk of development or exacerbation of nutritional deficits by optimizing patient access to mealtime assistance. International Journal for Quality in Healthcare 31(Supplement_1):6-13
Kieran, M., Cleary, M., De Brún, A., & Igoe, A. (2017) Supply and Demand: Application of Lean Six Sigma methods to improve drug round efficiency and release nursing time. International Journal for Quality in Healthcare. 29 (6): 803-809
Feeney A, Barry T, Hayden D, Higgins L, Kavanagh E, MacMahon P, O’Reilly M, Teeling SP, Kelly PJ, Murphy S (2016) Pre-Hospital Fast Positive Cases Identified by DFB Ambulance Paramedics: Final Clinical Diagnosis. Irish Medical Journal 109(4):399
Hayden D., Byrne C., Higgins L., O'Reilly M., Teeling S.P., MacMahon P., Kavanagh E., Kelly P., Murphy, S. (2016) Lean Six Sigma: A Highly-Effective Approach to Reducing Door-to-Needle Times in Acute Ischemic Stroke International Journal of Stroke.
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