SDRP Journal of Anesthesia & Surgery

Implementation of an Enhanced Recovery After Surgery (ERAS) Clinical Pathway Using Lean Six Sigma Principles: A Framework for Ongoing Quality Improvement

Co-Authors

Kolarczyk LM, McNaull P, Hance L, Bednar P, Kim HJ, Isaak DO

Citation

Lavinia Kolarczyk, Implementation of an Enhanced Recovery After Surgery (ERAS) Clinical Pathway Using Lean Six Sigma Principles: A Framework for Ongoing Quality Improvement(2016)SDRP Journal Of Anesthesia & Surgery 1(2)

Abstract

Enhanced Recovery after Surgery (ERAS) clinical pathways are quality improvement initiatives that employ evidence-based recommendations to standardize perioperative care and improve patient outcomes. ERAS clinical pathways have been shown to decrease hospital length of stay in a variety of surgical patient populations including major abdominal surgery.

ERAS clinical pathways encompass multiple patient care areas and multiple disciplines, which can make design and implementation challenging. Lean Six Sigma (LSS) methodology provides a framework for design and implementation of quality improvement processes such as ERAS clinical pathways. LSS principles focus on patient-centered, multidisciplinary approaches to improve patient care. Additionally, LSS principles emphasize continuous quality improvement and sustainability. LSS was therefore the vehicle for successful design and implementation of an ERAS clinical pathway for pancreatic surgery at our institution.

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