Case Study 1: Statistical Thinking in Health Care Harvard Case Solution & Analysis

Case Study 1: Statistical Thinking in Health Care Case Solution


The statistical thinking and methods are used for the purpose of improvement in business process and this case is based on statistical thinking in health care to maintain the large health organization. The statistical thinking approach has three main components, which include: variation, process, and data. The business process first focuses on the business improvements in which frameworks or models are followed and tools are used for solving the problems and improving the process. The various types of tools are used in statistical thinking, such as statistical inference (in which demographics are considered) and probability (chance of occurrence) are used to improve the process.

Ben Davis is focusing on exploring his statistical thinking in everyday life by applying potential applications in health care field. The case analyses is made on issue of medication mistakes and for which pharmacist were blamed and Ben Davis was about to fire from day to day operations as he was dispensed at HMO pharmacy. The medication issues can be categorized in basic errors, which include: transcription, prescription, dispensing, administration etc. nevertheless based on the case, the dispensing error is the root cause for the medication faults.

Therefore, the case objective is to quick fix the errors as pharmacist assistants blame doctors for incomplete and sluggish writing and on the other hand, doctors blame pharmacist for not entering the correct data by means of terminologies, brand or drug names etc. Hence, Ben wants to utilize his statistical thinking and various statistical tools and methods not only to reduce the problem but also to eliminate it completely.

Problem description/business case

The main problem faced as a HMO pharmacy is related to medication errors and the blame game; in which the assistant pharmacy blame doctors for not clear writing of terminologies and on other side, doctors blame pharmacy assistants to over use of their knowledge. Therefore, this case explains the medication errors occurring in HMO pharmacy. Though the recent research shows that the dispense errors have been decreased, but it also require distribution tools for further improvement. This is because the pharmacist deals with large amounts of medications and even a low error rate may lead to high volume of errors, which may result in heavy lawsuits for a little medication error.

The medication errors can happen due to any cause; such as transcription, prescription error, dispensing error, or administration error. However, most medication errors occur through dispensing errors, and this arises due to inconsistency between the prescribed drugs from doctor and medication that the pharmacy is distributing to the patients, it also includes the quality that is delivered to patients. If dispensing errors occur with the lack of quality, then pharmacist should be blamed and all pharmacist care experts should assure it. The pharmacy can also be blamed for medication errors in terms of following categories, which includes:

  • Unable to determine the prescribed error before supply of drugs
  • Pharmacist unable to evaluate the manufacturing error before distributing the drug
  • Fail to provide patient counseling as to prevent from administration flaws
  • Providing the wrong medicine to wrong patients
  • Incorrect drug strength, incorrect patient name and providing wrong drug
  • Supplying of expired drug

The SIPOC model is used in order to find out the process development task before its implementation phase. It is used when the task is defined as to what to do and what tools would be used in measuring phase that can enhance the business performance and the quality improvement.................

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