Date of Submission
Industrial and Systems Engineering
Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering
Our team took on the task to create an optimization plan for the sterile processing department of Wellstar Kennestone Hospital in Marietta. It was brought to our attention that the department experiences difficulties that result in a reduction of on-time starts for surgeries. In order to increase on-time starts, our team’s primary goal was to reduce the total cycle time of instrument trays through the Sterile Process Department. The outdated system also faces the following challenges: inconsistent supply numbers, multiple supply returns, lack of organizational flow of instruments and inefficient work patterns in instrument processing. Our team made use of Six Sigma principles and Continuous Improvement tools like 5S, Kaizen events, and simulation software such as Arena Software to perform data analyses on the current system and suggest improvements. These suggestions included the enforcement of a standardized order of operations for dirty cart processing, a modified clean zone layout, and an additional cart washer to increase throughput of carts and containers. The results gathered from simulated data supported the implementation of a standardized order of operations and the modified clean zone layout but did not provide sufficient evidence to justify the investment in an additional cart washer.