Toyota enters the health care provider market
The Detroit News has an article about Toyota’s pickup truck factory in San Antonio, TX, which will soon have the company’s first medical clinic. The ironically named Ford Brewer, Toyota’s executive in charge of health and wellness, says Toyota is taking the same approach to health care as to cars: lower costs by improving quality.
The Institute for Healthcare Improvement has been modeling its hospital quality efforts on the Toyota production system, and I’m encouraged that Toyota is picking up the ball itself. The clinic will focus on primary, outpatient care. What would really be great would be for Toyota to get big enough in San Antonio to build an inpatient hospital. That way we could see what’s really possible from a cost and quality standpoint.
For now, though, Toyota has enough on its hands, like trouncing the Big 3, so I’m not holding my breath for bolder moves.November 8, 2006