Reduce costs by over 20% and improve patient outcomes through process redesign, sustainable change management and project management solutions that recognise the value of front-line people.

Our Services in Health

We understand that healthcare is a knowledge-intensive sector and is delivered via work processes – a series of actions organised into operational sequences to provide better patient outcomes and experiences. Our process redesign efforts are focused on improving the sequences required by different patient groups and health providers to deliver high-quality care, and also the processes that involve the movement of goods, equipment and/or patients. Our approach is to map, review and redesign the patient’s journey to help meet demand and ensure that care is delivered in a safe, effective and efficient manner.

  • We review the process flow and remove wasteful activities that do not directly improve patient care.
  • We use data-driven methodology that focuses on identifying and reducing variation in a process to eliminate defects.
  • We measure performance data, staff and patient attitudes against external standards.
  • We recognise that constraints can limit performance. For improvement to occur, these constraints must be identified and improved.

SECORA works with clients to reduce costs, optimise the utilisation of existing resources and increase patients’ access to services.


Strategic Planning


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Establishing future strategic direction

As part of a community and private hospital initiative, we were engaged to develop a new Strategic Services Plan to enable more effective decision-making, task prioritisation and resource allocation. The board and CEO positively acknowledged the new priorities, timelines and funding allocations established. These continue to be monitored and fine-tuned as required.

Fostering the End-of-Life Care program

A large hospital group engaged us to review and improve its End of Life program in an environment requiring greater integration across health and social care, while continuing to deliver high-quality care. The organisation implemented our recommendations and has integrated the strategies into future change initiatives and action plans creating new strategic strength, value and enhancing the service offer.

Simplifying care services

A regional primary network provider asked us to undertake a project to simplify care services access and provision. This involved identification and mapping of the complex pathways that eligible clients use to enter the community care system and simplifying access to care services, with a focus on the elderly, people with disabilities and people leaving hospital services. Our findings and recommendations were implemented and subsequently endorsed by the Department of Health for the evidence-based methodology.

Health Needs Assessments and Service Plans


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Implementing Health Needs Assessments

A primary care network required Health Needs Assessments and Service Plans for two of the population cohorts supports: babies & young children; and teens.  For each population, the project included identifying qualitative and quantitative measures of comparative, normative, expressed and felt need within the catchment.  The Board reviewed the assessment, findings and recommendations and implemented the action plans.

Restructure


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Deploying realignment strategies

A prominent rural hospital faced commercial challenges because of new competition and technology, changing regulations and demographics and the current/future implications of health care and service changes. A restructure of their Health Services and improved corporate processes was needed. The realignment strategy deployed has allowed the hospital to upgrade technology, take advantage of 4 new services, establish 3 new strategic alliances and partnerships, redesign sections of the facility with a cost saving of 23% and re-position the organisation to better serve and thrive in the community.

Improving services for local communities

A large Local Government Community and Health Services division appointed us to conduct a comprehensive departmental review to better service the local community.  The organisation also wanted to establish a contact centre and evaluate and realise other structural and operational opportunities to improve client service delivery and organisational flexibility in anticipation of major legislative reforms.  All actions were approved for implementation and acknowledged as being ahead of regulatory requirements.

Change Management


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Prospering reporting standards

A Local Government Council engaged us to help respond more effectively to quality reporting requirements for the Quality Improvement Council, Home and Community Care (HACC) Services Standards, Extended Aged Care at Home Standards and Community Aged Care Packages Standards, HACC National Service Standards, Disability Standards, National Mental Health Standards programs and other Community Care Programs (CCP) that would underpin the development of a National Quality Reporting Framework for CCP and services. Council complimented our clear, consistent and well researched recommendations for the reporting standards required.

Developing and implementing improved strategies

We were engaged to support the development and implementation of an organisational goal regarding a revised HACC Quality Improvement Strategy for a Local Government. Participants acknowledged the inclusive, open style that we engendered in the sessions and felt more assured and clear about the future of quality assurance changes, and greater clarity in their roles during the transition period, with positive feedback up by 65%.

National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS)


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Adding value to communities

A detailed assessment undertaken as part of the NDIS pilot program in the Barwon region, provided an understanding of the scheme’s costs and monitoring needs for its future financial sustainability, current and possible health and social issues, and evidence-based people experiences affected by the program.  The snapshot of information and feedback was publicly acknowledged as providing a valuable regional profile of the community and also for its overall quality to further assist policy refinements.

Rural Communities


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Improving mental health

A regional health service provider wanted to improve the mental health outcomes of people living in its local and remote areas by providing greater access to mental health services through allied and nursing mental health staff and representatives.  New funding for mental health staff and resources increased by 30% to assist with issues of isolation, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander assistance, networking and communication with professional peers, family and friends. Further protocols regarding confidentiality and security were also implemented.

Service Quality Standards


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Implementing Service Quality Standards

A primary network provider required a clear, consistent set of service quality standards and processes for department-funded service providers and department-managed services. These programs had previously used different quality review processes and standards.  We were commended for providing an integrated, effective response to current and pending quality accreditation processes across the community sectors that were built on clarity, trust, and real collaboration supported by efficiency gains of up to 16%.

Aboriginal Health


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Aboriginal Health

An education and training provider engaged us to develop an evidence base for effective practices in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander suicide prevention: review the reporting of the evaluation process, examine data findings and provide conclusions to verify the validity of the findings in conjunction with current suicide prevention programs and a community consultations program.  Our report’s 14 recommendations identifying key findings and proposing strategic directions to strengthen the veracity and integrity of data for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander mental health, social and emotional well-being programs were integrated into governmental departmental policy reviews.

Pharmaceutical


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Applying our methodology increases supply to meet demand

A world leading analgesic medicine manufacturer needed to increase supply to meet demand. The company had recently purchased new equipment to support the required increase in manufacture; however, no standards or instructions had been developed, so utilisation of the new equipment was limited. Senior Management had also been trying to implement a Lean production system for 2 years with little progress. Applying our proven methodology and processes, production capacity increased by 32% with no further investment required; the reduction of lost time in breakdowns on key equipment improved by 15%; changeover times were reduced from 2hrs to 30mins on key constraint equipment; production up-time was maximised by 50%. Further, after delivering our training and coaching program, management received feedback that employee morale had improved dramatically and team work was more evident.

Improving discharge turnaround times

We were appointed to work with eight pilot hospital pharmacies to implement Lean methodologies to: improve script processing turnaround times; improve the workflow through the dispensary, reduce waiting, rework and frustrations of Pharmacy staff; and reduce the overall time taken to process scripts to better assist the process of discharge on the ward. A 26% reduction in time taken to process discharge scripts was achieved by utilising a pharmacist on the ward. The implementation of a problem and countermeasure process to allow improved tracking of concerns raised by staff, problems solved and a disciplined forum for voicing frustrations and encouragement to provide some of their own solutions, lead to improved staff engagement. Discharge turnaround times improved by 18% as well as realising genuine improvements in the core function of the pharmacy – ultimately leading to improved patient care.

Our Clients in Health

Meet our Health Specialists

Mark Taylor, Partner

Mark founded SECORA Australasia with John Grout in 2006 and has consulted for clients in the Mining, Defence, Utilities and Professional & Financial Services sectors. Mark is a former Partner of Ferrier Hodgson, Chartered Accountant and Restructuring professional. Mark has advised clients on system wide restructuring and re-organisations, productivity improvement, cost reduction, process efficiency and business case development in Australia, the APAC region and Europe.

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Dr. Sean C. Rast, Advisory Board

Sean founded SECORA in 2001. He holds a PhD. in operations management from the University of San Diego California and a Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt (both DMAIC and DFSS).
Sean’s engagements range from Pharmaceutical, Healthcare, Automotive, Government, Steel to mining with companies such as Roche, Merck, Novartis, BMW, Magna, Textron, BHP and others. Sean has worked in the USA, multiple European countries, China, and Australia.

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Dr. Christiane Rast

Christiane Rast holds a PhD. in chemistry from the University of Heidelberg Germany and is a certified Lean Six Sigma Black Belt (DMAIC). She has held various positions within the pharmaceutical industry, including site quality and compliance head, operational excellence lead, and the head of supply and capacity planning. Her last position was as the director of manufacturing at a chemical API production site with a major pharmaceutical company.

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