Outstanding Achievement

Memorial Health System, Springfield
Lean Six Sigma Project to Manage Aggressive Behavior in the ED Reduces Need for Security Staff Intervention by 66%

With data showing a system-wide increase in aggressive behavior and violence in the emergency department (ED), system leaders determined that frontline staff needed more support to more effectively manage individuals with aggressive behaviors.

A project team used Lean Six Sigma Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve and Control (DMAIC) methodology to implement environmental improvements, including:

  • Developing staff competencies on environmental safety and resource availability;
  • Implementing a sitter/patient companion program;
  • Providing de-escalation training for all ED and security staff; and
  • Partnering with local police.

As a result, security calls for disruptive behavior decreased from 7.4 calls to 2.5 calls per 1,000 ED patient visits. An annual cost savings of $56,000 resulted from a reduction in security staff utilization, staff turnover, and staff and patient injuries.