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Goal: Infrastructure

To Create Effective Work Flow and Structures that Enable the College of Health Sciences to Enhance Teaching and Scholarship Outputs that Contribute to Life-long Health

This goal was generated because the college staff identified the need to address many poor functioning processes and systems within the university, Health Services, college and schools.  What follows is an update as of May 2017 on progress that has been made on three objectives and a variety of strategies/objectives that were identified as part of the COHS strategic planning process.

Objective 1: To Improve Efficiency of Operating Systems to Build Resource Capacity

To this end the college has conducted 4 separate LEAN 6-Sigma trainings for approximately 50 staff in the COHS, covering eight topical areas. Read more about the projects on our LEAN 6-Sigma webpage.  The most recent training took place in January/February of 2017.  In total, almost 25 percent of the COHS employees have participated in the trainings and have become “yellow belts” through the training.

In addition to the LEAN 6-sigma trainings, the COHS created a LEAN Academy that was offered to 15 interested graduates from the LEAN 6-Sigma training.  The purpose of this session was to develop employees within the COHS to have more advanced skills in LEAN 6-sigma so they can act as facilitators and problem solvers for the COHS.  This training was completed in May of 2017.

Also, the Dean recruited four COHS employees to help address the COHS infrastructure goal.  The teams charge is to help coordinate and facilitate COHS activities designed to improve workflow that will result in improved teaching and scholarship outputs. The team members include Betty Miller from School of Nursing, Lutana Haan from School of Allied Health Sciences, Jennifer Obenshain from the School of Social Work and Alexis Rowland from the Dean’s Office. Collectively this team will work to provide opportunities, resources and a home for problem solving around the strategic infrastructure goal.

Objective 2: To Utilize Current and Future Centers and Institutes as a Vehicle for Promoting Relevant Research, Teaching and Service

Considerable effort has been focused on the Blue Sky Institute (BSI) which is jointly supported by COHS and College of Business and Economics (COBE.)  The Institute was approved by the State Board of Education in the summer of 2016 when it was presented by the deans of COHS and COBE.  Leaders from Saint Alphonsus, St. Luke’s, Health and Welfare (H & W) and Blue Cross of Idaho have identified mental health as the complex problem to jointly address.  During the spring semester BSI was identified as the facilitator for the state of Idaho Health Quality Planning Commission (HQPC) that is chaired by the COHS Dean as they address behavioral health in Idaho. In short, the commission will use staff within the BSI to begin creating a template for behavioral health care in Idaho. Their first steps are to:

Step 1. Partnerships-  BSI would work to help create partnerships with Idaho universities, Health and Welfare and members of the HQPC to examine behavioral health in Idaho.

Step 2. Define Quality- BSI will work with the university and H & W partners to facilitate a common understanding of quality behavioral health (it was suggested that the group consider the IOM report on quality behavioral health, the report generated for Idaho through WICHE and other sources of material available through H & W, payers and providers).  This was facilitated through a day long planning session in the summer of 2017.

Objective 3: To Improve the Efficiency of the College’s Knowledge Transfer Process Through an Onboarding and Exiting System for Faculty and Staff

The college has not made progress on this objective.  The Dean plans on working with staff and college leaders during the spring/summer of 2017 to address this objective.