Registration Open: Lean Health Care Training & Mini-Project, SHIP Eligible Hospitals

12/09/15  Portland, Ore.

The National Rural Health Resource Center is pleased to announce that registration is now open for a no-cost Lean health care training and mini-project for up to 30 Small Rural Hospital Improvement Grant Program (SHIP) eligible hospitals.

In this course, participating hospitals will learn about Lean thinking and process improvement. Using the knowledge gained through webinars, facilitated discussions, hands-on activities and individualized technical assistance from a Lean Healthcare Black Belt, hospitals will implement and complete a Lean mini-project with the goal of improving self-identified processes and/or outcomes within the hospital.

Application Information

  • This Project is available at no cost and open only to SHIP eligible hospitals (hospitals need not be currently SHIP funded to apply)
  • Interested hospitals must apply online by Friday, December 11, 2015
  • This Project is open to a maximum of thirty (30) SHIP eligible hospitals. Hospitals will be randomly selected from applicant pool
  • All applicant hospitals will be notified of their selection status by Monday, December 21, 2015


The training will be led by John Roberts, Chief Executive Officer and President of Midwest Health Consultants. John has an extensive background in successful Lean implementation and over 35 years of professional health care experience. John received his Lean Healthcare Black Belt in 2009 and serves as a Lean coach supporting clients through the implementation of Lean concepts and tools in health care settings. Over the past six years, John has worked with multiple rural hospitals throughout Nebraska implementing Lean concepts. This will be John’s third time leading the SHIP Lean Training and Mini-Project.


  • By applying, each hospital team is committing to participate in four live webinars and to complete two homework assignments and a mini-project in their hospital. In order to be successful, the instructor estimates that each participating hospital will need to commit a total of 40-50 hours to this training/project
  • Each participating hospital team must have three or more participants with at least one participant representing hospital senior leadership
  • The Project will include submission of a charter and summary report from the hospital with follow-up education and guidance from the instructor via an online learning management system, Moodle
  • Projects must focus on improvement within the hospital, include measurable outcomes and align with one of the three key focus areas of SHIP:
    • Value-Based Purchasing activities that support improved data collection to facilitate quality reporting and improvement
    • Accountable Care Organization (ACO) or Shared Savings activities that support the development or basic tenets of ACOs or shared savings programs
    • Prospective Payment System or Payment Bundling activities that improve hospital financial processes
    • For more information about these focus areas and links to additional resources, please visit the SHIP webpage.

    • Results from course assignments and the mini-project will be shared with the Federal Office of Rural Health policy and may be used publicly to promote and highlight outcomes of the training.
    • Moodle will serve as the main communication platform throughout the Project, including submission of exercises and technical assistance from the instructor. Participants will be provided with instructions for creating a free Moodle account

    Key Activities & Dates

    Webinar #1
    1:00 – 2:30 p.m. Central Time

    Lean Walk Exercise Due
    5:00 p.m. Central Time

    Webinar #2
    1:00 – 2:30 p.m. Central Time

    Project Charter Due
    5:00 p.m. Central Time

    Webinar #3
    1:00 – 2:30 p.m. Central Time

    Individualized Technical Assistance Call
    04/12/2016 – 04/14/2016
    Time TBD

    Final Project Report Due
    5:00 p.m. Central Time

    Webinar #4
    1:00 – 3:00 p.m. Central Time


    For more information, please contact Sarah Brinkman at (218) 727-9390 ext. 241 or .

    This project is supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) under grant number UB1RH24206, Information Services to Rural Hospital Flexibility Program Grantees, $957,510 (0% financed with nongovernmental sources). This information or content and conclusions are those of the author and should not be construed as the official position or policy of, nor should any endorsements be inferred by HRSA, HHS or the U.S. Government.