Society for Health Systems Newsletter

    September 2010                                                              Visit the Society for Health Systems Website      

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Contribute to the Newsletter!

The SHS newsletter team is always on the lookout for new content relevant to professionals working in the healthcare improvement field. To contribute articles, interviews, book reviews, presentations, or to make staff aware of members in the news, ideas for future content, or other newsworthy content please contact
Bart Sellers.
An industrial engineer as hospital CEO
By Mark Graban
SHS member and contributor Mark Graban reflects on the Lean Blog  about Mike Riordan's keynote presentation the 2010 SHS/ASQ Healthcare Division conference in Atlanta. Mike Riordan is a graduate industrial engineer and ceo of Greenville Hospital System in South Carolina. To read the blog
Researchers and ED physician at Penn State simulate impact of using an ED physician in triage

D. J. Medeiros, Eric Swenson, Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering Department of Emergency Medicine; Christopher DeFlitch, MD, Department of Emergency Medicine, Penn State Hershey Medical Center
In this paper presented at the 2008 Winter Simulation Conference, researchers at Penn State University collaborated with the Emergency Department at Penn State Hershey Medical Center to evaluate a new approach to patient flow. Provider Directed Queuing (PDQ) places an emergency care physician at triage.The emergency care provider listens to the patient's complaint and the triage nursing assessment and works as part of a team to provide the resources necessary for patient care. Simulation was used to estimate resource requirements, patient census and patient waiting times. Results from the simulation model and a pilot study influenced the design of a new addition to the Hershey Medical Center ED. Full article
University at Buffalo Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering studies human factors of ED patient tracking
ISE faculty are working to investigate and analyze emerging technology for patient tracking in hospital Emergency Departments (EDs). The project will use an immersive laboratory environment to study the ways that the caregivers interact with patient tracking systems. Read more

Revenue cycle improvement: A Six Sigma approach to denials management
By Betsey Kennedy, Performance Engineer, Stanly Regional Medical Center, Albemarle, NC
Betsey Kennedy provides a case study presentation using Six Sigma to improve denials management. The first three months of the project produced 1.6 million dollars in annualized savings at the 97-bed Stanly Regional Medical Center. To read the full presentation
Strategies for leading through change: people matter
By Norka Saldaņa, Ph.D., Senior Consultant ValuMetrix Services, Ortho Clinical Diagnostics, a Johnson & Johnson company
Effective leadership is the most important consideration for successfully implementing organizational change. In this paper presented at the SHS/ASQ Annual Conference and Expo 2010 in Atlanta, Dr. Norka Saldaņa describes a comprehensive change leadership model based on the current literature and her extensive experience in industry. To read the entire paper
Call for Society for Health Systems Board of Directors Nominations

Take advantage of this excellent opportunity to serve your society in a significant way. If not you, then perhaps someone you know is qualified to take a leadership position on the SHS Board. SHS continues to grow and we are looking for motivated, enthusiastic volunteers to continue the progress. Participating in a leadership role for the society is a challenging, yet at the same time, very rewarding experience. Take a few minutes to consider submitting your name or that of a colleague to the SHS Nominating Committee for review.

Interested candidates should complete the nomination form by Oct. 31 for consideration by the Nominating Committee for the following positions: Two directors whose terms will begin February 17, 2011. All nominees must be current, regular members of SHS. Students are not eligible.

Contact David Cowan , Nominating Committee Chair, if you have questions about the positions and responsibilities. Please consider giving back to your society.

Nominations are now being accepted for the SHS/HIMSS Excellence in Healthcare Management Engineering/Process Improvement Award.  
Nominations are accepted through Nov. 1.


The recipient of the Excellence in Healthcare Management Engineering/Process Improvement Award shall be selected jointly by the Boards of Directors of the Society of Health Systems (SHS) and the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS). The award will be presented to one individual annually, however there may be an exception occasionally where the award may given to two individuals, who in the opinion of the joint Boards of Directors, has best demonstrated leadership in implementing significant synergies between the process improvement and information technology professions. These contributions may be of a professional or technical nature, and may include research or development of improved processes (with or without technology), or exemplary contribution to the professional society. The award will be co-presented by SHS and HIMSS during the annual SHS Conference and the HIMSS Award Banquet annually.

Information about the award and criteria


Nomination site (Due Nov. 1)

Make your nomination!

Outstanding SHS Member of the Month
*Must be in an active status
*May only be selected once every 12 months 
Submit to Pam Patterson
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Thank you to the SHS Newsletter Team
Tom Best 
Eric Buchanan
Sara Falkiwicz 
Alina Hsu 
Aaron Kanne 
Karthik Yenkto Raman 
Junell Scheeres  
Walt Abel 
Interim Editor