West of Scotland Wheelchair and Seating Service – REDESIGN PROGRAMME
WestMARC WSS is committed to an ongoing programme of continuous improvement to deliver a number of key priorities for WSS service re-design, including:
- Faster response to assessment, provision and repair.
- Regular maintenance checks.
- Improved communications between the WSS and service users.
- Access to a range of more modern wheelchair equipment.
- Equitable provision of powered wheelchairs.
Various LEAN TECHNIQUES have been adopted by WestMARC in order to assist in achieving these goals. Of the many facets of LEAN, the techniques of Value Stream Mapping, 5Ss, Root Cause Analysis and Kaizen (Continuous Improvement) are among those which are supporting our Referral to Assessment and Referral to Provision objectives.
The following programmes are among those which have addressed those objectives:
This initiative, which was launched in 2010, exceeded expectations, in that almost 300 successful One-Stop-Clinics were held during the year. i.e. new referrals were equipped with their prescribed device on the date of their assessment appointment.
From data collected throughout 2010, recommendations have been determined into further potential increases in the scope of OSS, by the prudent selection of additional ranges of wheelchairs and spares – stored locally to the appointment clinic.
One of the Re-design targets is to reduce the waiting time for ‘direct issue’ wheelchairs for which a prescription can be made directly from the referral information (i.e. without the need for the patient to attend a clinical appointment).
Improvements, which have included delivery agreements from wheelchair suppliers and additional recruitment of technician resources, have led to a performance improvement from 40% in past years, to over 90% within 2 weeks from screening the referral, to delivery of the chair to the patient. This now exceeds the national target 80%.
Continual monitoring in relation to the national targets for each of:
- Urgent repairs (greater than 75% within 1 day) and
- Routine repairs (greater than 90% within 5 days)
Highlights that WestMARCs performance is now consistently exceeding the stated objectives.
Additional, local wheelchair stockholding has been provided, with the intention to support O.S.S. and Bio–Engineering Provision clinics.
This is being achieved by the successful deployment of 5S techniques in the stores and workshop areas.
Continuous improvement activities are centred around the following work streams:
• In-house manufacture of contoured seating
• Reduce the referral to first assessment timescales
• Redesign the modular seating process
• Optimise the wheelchair assembly process
• Review the external clinic process
• Improve the workshop manufacturing capability and layout.