Lean Six Sigma for Healthcare

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About Lean Six Sigma

Lean is a management model that was born in manufacturing and is now taking hold in healthcare. Lean Healthcare focuses on patient needs and uses a bottom-up approach to identify and fix broken systems anywhere within Healthcare organisations. Lean engages all staff as well as leaders, in redesigning processes for greater efficiency and quality and reduces waste by streamlining processes and eliminating Non Value Add.

Six Sigma delivers breakthrough process improvements by eliminating errors and effectively solving tough problems. Our experience shows that combining these two methods gives you a comprehensive tool set that accelerates the speed and effectiveness of almost any process within healthcare.

Although healthcare differs in many ways from manufacturing, there are also surprising similarities: Whether building a car or providing health care for a patient, staff must rely on multiple, complex processes to accomplish their tasks and provide value to the customer or patient. Waste — of money, time, supplies, or goodwill — decreases value.

By focusing on identify waste within these complex process Lean Healthcare has potential to improve healthcare delivery by reducing the “Patient Care Pathway”, to the benefit of both patient and staff.

Our Lean Six Sigma training is delivered using the DMAIC methodology of Define, Measure, Analyse, Improve and Control.

Read our blog on ‘Why Lean for Healthcare?’ from our expert tutor, Padriag Kelly

Lean Six Sigma Model


This closed loop approach to process improvement in a Healthcare environment ensures that logic and data drives the solution and the critical “Control phase”, ensures on-going monitoring and sustainability, which is really important to long-term success.


Lean Six Sigma training is provided through the belt based training system where personnel are designated as yellow belts, green belts, black belts and master black belts, similar to karate. Each belt is trained to a different level of problem solving expertise. Having different skillsets available within a hospital or healthcare organisation can result in an extremely powerful and effective team.


Expert Tutors

Learn from leaders

We believe, in this field, the best people to learn from are seasoned practitioners, not just academics. For the past 10 years Padraig Kelly has exclusively worked within Irish hospitals and healthcare organisations, gaining direct hands-on experience of major lean transformations. John Ryan, a renowned Master Black Belt has over 20 years’ experience leading, managing and driving major change initiatives.

Both Experts who have worked at the coalface, who can draw on their experiences and share real world insights, stories and techniques.

Tutors to empower and inspire you.

View our tutors

Lean Six Sigma Tutors
Lean Six Sigma What We Do

What We Do

We get under the skin of your healthcare organisation

By limiting our class size and providing 1 to 1 mentoring, our tutors make it their job to understand yours. They will guide and support you every step of the way, even going on site to your hospital or lab if necessary to help you deliver your Lean Six Sigma project.

They hold themselves accountable for ensuring that your project delivers on its objectives and that you maximise results for your healthcare organisation.

Our Clients

Be in good company

Our programmes are renowned for their thorough, practical, real world approach and impressive results. We use a combination of theory and practice that works.
That’s why the likes of the Mater University Hospital, Rotunda Maternity Hospital, Cork University Hospital and Dublin Dental Hospital trust us to train their best people.

Lean Six Sigma Clients

Immediate Payback

SQT have delivered Lean Six Sigma programmes for over 450 different organisations, large and small, both service and manufacturing, helping them to achieve project savings in excess of €84m for their organisations (2009-2016).

Euro Black Belt Learners Saving Average saving per project by our Black Belt learners.
Euro Green Belt Learners Saving Average saving per project by our Green Belt Learners

Client Results Delivering Results

  • Phlebotomy team used spaghetti diagrams, demand data & 5S to achieve a 50% reduction in end-to-end turnaround time for Ward Rounds.
  • Largest Antenatal Clinic in Europe used Value Stream Mapping to achieve a 32% reduction in the time patients spent in the clinic and a 22% reduction in patient handovers.
  • Pathology Department within large university teaching hospital used Lean & Six Sigma principles to undertake a Rapid Improvement Event which resulted in better space & staff utilisation, reduced turnaround times as well as reduced health and safety risks.
  • Adult Outpatient Department used Lean methodology to achieve a 25% reduction in the PET (Patient Experience Time) for 1st visits and Consultants appointments.

Earn a prestigious, international qualification

Our QQI (formerly HETAC) accredited Lean Six Sigma Green and Black Belt programmes are validated against external prescribed award standards. Accreditation requires both successful completion of a project and a written assessment, ensuring learners develop real capability.

Read a blog by our tutor John Ryan on Lean Six Sigma Certification

You get more with SQT

Support Materials Access

Free access to extensive support materials

SQT provide learners with access to a free online platform. The online system provides learners with access to a wealth of learning resources (such as course notes, presentations, additional reading, templates, screen casts and links to useful websites). Learners can also upload assessments and receive feedback from Tutors via the system.

Continuous Development

Begin a journey of continuous development

On qualification you will be invited to join the Lean Six Sigma Network. A group we formed in 2003 to facilitate knowledge sharing and networking. The group meets in Dublin every 3 months.

Trust pedigree

Trust pedigree

SQT are one of the longest established and largest providers of Lean Six Sigma training in Ireland and the UK.


Practical subject knowledge and expertise

Padraig relates Lean very well back to Healthcare.  Materials were easy to use and follow – very in-dept.  Really enjoyed it, pushed me out of my comfort zone.

- Consultant Gynaecologist, Rotunda Hospital


The trainer has a wealth of knowledge on process improvement and the use of the lean improvement methodology.  I feel he is well placed to help any organisation to measure and improve their performance.

- Quality Manager, Mater University Hospital

Discover the capability to drive efficiency.

View our Lean Six Sigma programmes Testimonial