Lean Design: Piece by Piece at MetroHealth

A collaborative approach was used to create an entirely process-neutral platform for The MetroHealth System in Cleveland, offering adaptability for its new hospital’s future.

As Cleveland’s public hospital, The MetroHealth System has long served the city’s most underserved population. However, its existing campus, which includes a variety of buildings constructed between 1912 and 2004 and totaling more than 2 million square feet, has outlived its usefulness. The facility can no longer accommodate fast-evolving advancements in technology and patient care.

To answer this reality, the organization is building a new 11-story acute care hospital on its 52-acre site, which is scheduled for completion by 2022. In partnership with HGA (Milwaukee), the master architect and engineering firm responsible for planning, design, and delivery on the project, the system is also working to innovate planning, design, and construction.

The goal is to create a healthcare facility that’s dynamic rather than static, resulting in a set of best practices that use a Lean philosophy and “process-neutral” design approach.

“Process-neutral design is achieved by delivering maximum flexibility now and 50 years into the future,” says Walter Jones, senior vice president of campus transformation at MetroHealth. Traditionally, Lean methodology seeks to eliminate waste by focusing on the way care is delivered today and improving upon it. Broadening Lean to include potential future states, the concept of process neutral looks toward the number of different ways care might be provided going forward, as well.

Read the full article in Healthcare Design Magazine.