Improvement Initiatives

Each year, UNM Health Systems launches initiatives to identify and treat medical issues more effectively and more efficiently. Our initiatives are enhancing safety and improving patient outcomes.

LEAN Techniques Decrease Delays in Patient Care

In 2012, UNM Hospital implemented LEAN. This system and process evaluation method helps us ensure efficiency and value. Using lean, UNM Hospital has reduced wait times, increased efficiency, limited unnecessary paperwork and decreased delays in delivering care.


LoboWings is a surgical program to help improve operating room safety and communication. The program implements crew resource management, similar to an airline safety program. The operating room team uses a verbal checklist to ensure that any team member can stop a procedure if they see a safety issue. Since starting LoboWings, communication in the operating room has improved significantly.

Antibiotic Stewardship Program

The Antimicrobial Stewardship Team (AST) is on a mission to better use antimicrobial agents. The AST team includes a doctor and pharmacist trained in infectious disease care.

Each day, the AST checks the appropriateness and duration of treatment for all adult patients on targeted antimicrobial agents. Our goals are to improve patient outcomes, reverse or delay antimicrobial resistance and save our patients and facilities money.

Managing Sepsis

UNM Hospital joined forces with care teams from emergency medicine and internal medicine to identify and review all cases of severe sepsis (blood poisoning) – a sometimes fatal condition caused by infections that enter the bloodstream.

Early identification and treatment of sepsis can improve outcomes. We gave case-by-case feedback to providers, improved system processes and identified ways to improve care. Through these efforts, we reduced deaths linked to severe sepsis by more than 10%. At Sandoval Regional Medical Center, a similar process has resulted in a 50% improvement.

Meet the Quality Team

Get to know the people who drive UNM's patient safety initiatives.