RCHE Publications


Koch, D., Woodward, H., Brown, D., Montgomery, K.,Manning, M. (2007) Improving process throughput of Cardiac catheterization using Six Sigma Training. Proceedings of the 2007 American Society for Engineering Education Indiana/Illinois Section Conference, Indianapolis, IN, March 2007.


Healthcare is changing daily with the introduction of technology. Heart catheterization is one area that has excelled in the new technology that is constantly being introduced. Facilities are being built which provide patients with diagnostics and treatments that save lives daily. Due to the continual improvement of healthcare processes, it is also important to review process and continually improve efficiency. The catheterization lab patient care process must provide quality patient care that exceeds expectations of all involved. A project was completed to train a team that would implement process improvement. The team was made up of the technicians, nurses and administrative personnel who worked daily in the lab. Using six sigma as a basis of process control, training was executed on a weekly basis with deliverable outcomes that were implemented for improvements. A team of professionals worked to optimize current practices regarding patient through put. This was completed by applying six sigma concepts to communications, scheduling, documentation, and resource utilization of the unit. As a team, resources were compared to the needs of patients’ and regulatory requirements. Interval steps of discovery occurred as the project proceeded. This paper will outline the process, difficulties and outcomes of the project in general terms which provides a basis of validating the time spent on six sigma training.


cath lab, systems engineering, throughput, capacity, scheduling, Lean, Six Sigma

Date of this Version

March 2007