Geisinger Health System 
Intermediate level
Advanced level
Value Stream 3 Innovation

Lean thinking for innovators

Lean applications in creating and implementing innovations
Thursday, Oct. 27 Location Code
10:45am-11:45am Houston Ballroom B/C, 3rd floor ThP/45

Discover the secrets to successfully engaging stakeholders in innovation. Learn how to use data and measurement to focus frontline staff on results. Hear how to sustain innovation outcomes and create velocity. Take innovation to the next level - never leave your lean wingman.


Geisinger will share real world examples, including the concept, development, implementation and ongoing evolution of its award-winning Mobile Health Paramedic program. This innovative program was recognized as the 2015 Emergency Care Innovation of the Year and featured in the Wall Street Journal. Learn the active use of lean principles: patient-centered; pull and flow value; quality at the source; manage daily for improvement. Hear about improvement tools embedded into the process: huddles; daily metrics; visual management; single piece flow; PDSA cycles; standard work; 5 Whys; root cause analysis; leadership rounding; andon signaling and escalation protocols. A continuous improvement mindset was essential for rapid cycle testing of ideas, as well as problem resolution. Using a purposeful, principled approach, supported with active daily metrics, was pivotal for identifying both problems and new opportunities. Hear how good communication between stakeholders allowed the organization to respond quickly and continuously improve the program for its core customers, patients, community and internal stakeholders.


Geisinger Health System is an integrated health services organization widely recognized for its innovative use of the electronic health record and the development of innovative care delivery models such as ProvenHealth Navigator® and ProvenCare®. Geisinger serves more than 3 million residents throughout 45 counties in central, south-central and northeast Pennsylvania, and also in southern New Jersey with the addition of AtlantiCare, a National Malcolm Baldridge Award recipient. The physician-led system is comprised of 30,000 employees, including 1,600 employed physicians, 11 hospital campuses, two research centers and a 510,000-member health plan, all of which leverage an estimated $8.9 billion positive impact on the Pennsylvania economy. Geisinger has repeatedly garnered national accolades for integration, quality and service.

Presenters: Kathleen Sharp / David Schoenwetter

Kathleen Sharp is a senior performance innovation consultant with Geisinger Health System, focusing on developing innovations in care delivery. Her projects have received national and international awards for quality and innovation. In her 30 years in health care, Sharp has worked for both insurance carriers and health care providers. As a former insurance auditor and trainer, she has used those skills in managing specialty practices, a women’s cancer center and as executive director of a multispecialty physician group. Sharp earned her master’s degree in business operational excellence and is a lean black belt.

Dr. David Schoenwetter is medical director of Geisinger Emergency Medical Services and Geisinger Life Flight. He is also physician champion of mobile integrated health services for the Geisinger Health System. Schoenwetter is an emergency medicine physician leader whose vision led to the development of innovative approaches for using paramedics in care delivery.