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Making your practice more efficient with Lean Six Sigma

Podcast - October 12, 2022

Leadership Development

Practice Efficiency

Policies & Procedures

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In this episode of the Insights podcast, we are joined by MGMA consultant Owen Dahl, MBA, FALCHE, CHBC, LSSMBB. Dahl is leading the Lean Six Sigma Green Belt program and suggests it's a good fit for healthcare leaders with existing Lean Six Sigma knowledge to improve their skills.

The online course will be held from Oct. 25 to Dec. 13, 2022 and is eligible for 30 ACMPE and 30 CEU credits.

Don’t quite have time to listen to the entire episode? No worries. We’ve compiled an assortment of highlights for your convenience:

(5:37): “We look at this idea of how can we be more efficient. One of the arguments that I always run into is, ‘Lean Six Sigma works in manufacturing, but doesn’t work in healthcare.’ That's not true at all, because if you think about what Toyota does in assembling a car, it goes through an assembly line. When you think about a physician office, it goes from the check in to the triage to the provider interaction, to the immediate follow up needed after the provider interaction, and then check out — that is also an assembly line in terms of concepts. So why can't we take things from other industries, and bring them into our industry, and help us achieve that patient experience?”

(11:15): “The big concept that we have, is that we want everyone who enrolls in the program to complete a project. So we shepherd everyone through the different steps of doing a project itself, where we receive an outcome that is very specific to that particular practice and that particular practice’s needs.

(13:21): “Two prerequisites that I would think about. First, there has to be a commitment on the part of the participant to say that they personally want to improve themselves, and that they’re looking for that improvement to translate to improving the organization. Second, we really like to have people who have some knowledge of the whole Lean Six Sigma concept, because this is not teaching the basics.

(18:00): “A vast majority of the people that have taken the program have learned and changed their own approach to problem solving, interaction with staff, focusing on different things. So even if we’ve not been successful in convincing everybody that they have to do Lean Six Sigma for most of the problems that they have in their practice, we’ve been able to get people to change their way of focusing on and addressing problems and achieving solutions that relate to a positive outcome for that patient experience.”


We'd love to hear from you. Tell us what you think. Let us know if there's a topic you want us to cover or an expert you would like us to interview. Email us at

The MGMA Insights podcasts are produced by Daniel Williams, Rob Ketcham and Decklan McGee. 


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You can register now for the Lean Six Sigma Green Belt program, Oct. 25 to Dec. 13, and for the Medical Practice Excellence: Leaders Conference Digital Experience (DX),  Nov. 8-10, 2022.


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