Profile

Kim Pittenger MD

Kim began his career in family medicine in 1979. By 2004 he became a strong believer in the Toyota Production System and its ability to improve the ease of delivering quality care and contribute to financial success. Kim left private practice after nearly 40 years to devote his career to medical care innovations inspired by lean methodology.

Kim has firsthand experience implementing kaizen in his prior role as director of quality and innovation for primary care at Virginia Mason Medical Center in Seattle. As a result of his work, the medical center experienced quantitative results including positive primary care financial margins, disease management and screening attainments exceeding national averages, and a consistently favorable patient satisfaction rating. Additionally, Kim implemented flow production of indirect care using Toyota Management System principles, contributing to provider satisfaction and sustainability rates that are atypical in today’s primary care practices. He also developed a best practices tactical force which sought to align clinical practice patterns with operational practice patterns to support evidence-based care.

Kim has earned many accolades, including recognition as a top doctor in Seattle Magazine for 10 consecutive years; American Medical Group Association’s Preeminence Award as part of the Virginia Mason team in 2011; and the James Tate Mason Physician of the Year Award from Virginia Mason Medical Center in 2006.