Date of Award

Spring 2017

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Engineering Management

Committee Director

Pilar Pazos

Committee Member

Mamadou Seck

Committee Member

Ghaith Rabadi


Continuous quality improvement tools have been widely used in the Healthcare Industry to increase efficiency and patient safety as well as to reduce cost. This research explores the impact of a Lean Six Sigma (LSS) process improvement initiative on the overall process efficiency and patient safety in the Labor and Delivery (L+D) units of a large hospital provider. This study focuses on the application of a modeling and simulation methodology to investigate the influence of a localized process improvement intervention on the overall L+D unit output by considering patient flow, system capacity, and unit performance. The simulation models capacity profiles and patient flow through the system to determine patient throughput and waiting times. Baseline data was obtained from information systems logs from two Sentara Healthcare. Finally, the simulation analysis provides evidence to support decision making regarding process improvement implementation across the evaluated scenarios; the results evidence a significant time reduction, not only in the registration process but also in the “Time to Arrive to the Physician.”