The application of a “6S Lean” initiative to improve workflow for emergency eye examination rooms

Samir Nazarali, Jaspreet Rayat, Hilary Salmonson, Theodora Moss, Pamela Mathura, Karim F. Damji

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


Background Ophthalmology residents on call at the Royal Alexandra Hospital identified workplace disorganization and lack of standardization in emergency eye examination rooms as an impediment to efficient patient treatment. Objective The aim of the study was to use the “6S Lean” model to improve workflow in eye examination rooms at the Royal Alexandra Hospital. Methods With the assistance of quality improvement consultants, the “6S Lean” model was applied to the current operation of the emergency eye clinic examination rooms. This model, considering 8 waste categories, was then used to recommend and implement changes to the examination rooms and to workplace protocols to enhance efficiency and safety. Results Eye examination rooms were improved with regards to setup, organization of supplies, inventory control, and maintenance. All targets were achieved, and the 5S audit checklist score increased by 33 points from 44 to 77. Conclusions Implementation of the 6S methodology is a simple approach that removes inefficiencies from the workplace. The ophthalmology clinic removed waste from all 8 waste categories, increased audit results, mitigated patient and resident safety risks, and ultimately redirected resident time back to patient care delivery.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)435-440
Number of pages6
JournalCanadian Journal of Ophthalmology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2017
Externally publishedYes


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