T-minus 9…8…7…6… .

Friday capped off my first full week of work. I am now 10% completed with my internship and have only 9 weeks left.  It didn’t hit me how short the summer is until one of my co-workers mentioned it in passing. “Nine more weeks remaining, James.” …Wow, I need to start producing. In support, though, the first week doesn’t really define the entire internship experience–it’s an orientation week. It’s a week where you attend the new-employee presentations and have meet-and-greets with the staff with whom you’ll be rubbing shoulders with all summer. What I find funny is that in the same period of time that it took me to learn where the coffeemaker is and the bathrooms are, employees of several patient care units around me were able to collectively reduce per-patient CT utilization time at the hospital. In one week these employees identified defects and waste in processes, and devised and acted on a plan to eliminate those defects and wastes. It truly was [Toyota] production at its finest. Seeing their outcome made me realize the power of collective drive and teamwork. Sure their job just began and they will need to continue to monitor and improve on their plan to ensure the same outcomes from hereon, but I can now see what a week–just one-fiftieth of a year–of hard work can do for a hospital and its patients. Amazing to say the least.

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