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Larry, an idealistic young policy analyst, dreams of achieving change from the inside. On his quest to find a cure for ER crowding, he encounters poorly designed structures, misconceived improvement projects, managerial stonewalling, political posturing, and the ghost of Tommy Douglas. Can Larry save the system?

A digital micro-series of 11 bite-size episodes, Larry... is an all-singing, all-dancing, all-evidence-informed romp through the healthcare bureaucracy.

About: Story


When not writing musicals, Sara Kreindler conducts health-systems research at the University of Manitoba. Prior to her faculty appointment, she spent eight years as a researcher with the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority. The non-hummable version of some of Larry’s adventures can be found in the following articles:

From the Western Canadian Patient Flow (WeCanFlow) Study

  • Kreindler SA, Schull MJ, Rowe BH, Doupe MB, Metge CJ. Despite interventions, emergency flow stagnates in urban Western Canada. Healthc Pol 2021; 16(4): 70-83. doi: 10.12927/hcpol.2021.26498

  • Kreindler SA, Star N, Hastings S, Winters S, Johnson K, Mallinson S, Brierley M, Nicholson Goertzen L, Anwar MR, Aboud Z. "Working against gravity": The uphill task of overcapacity management. Health Serv Insight 2020; 13: 1-6. doi: 10.1177/1178632920929986

  • Kreindler SA, Hastings S, Mallinson S, Brierley M, Birney A, Tarraf R, Winters S, Johnson K, Nicholson Goertzen L, Anwar MR, Aboud Z. The "hard, relentless, never-ending" work of focusing on discharge: a qualitative study of managers' perspectives. J Health Org Manag 2021 [epub ahead of print]; doi: 10.1108/JHOM-04-2021-0132

  • Kreindler SA, Aboud Z, Hastings S, Winters S, Johnson K, Mallinson S, Brierley M. How do health systems address patient flow when services are misaligned with population needs? A qualitative study. Int J Health Policy Manag 2021 [epub ahead of print]; doi: 10.34172/ijhpm.2021.36.  

Prior Work on Patient Access and Flow

  • Kreindler SA. The three paradoxes of patient flow. BMC Health Serv Res 2017; 17:481. doi: 10.1186/s12913-017-2416-8

  • Kreindler SA. Six ways not to improve patient flow. BMJ Qual Saf 2016; 0: 1-7. doi:10.1136/bmjqs-2016-005438

  • Kreindler SA, Cui Y, Metge CJ, Raynard M. Patient characteristics associated with longer emergency department stay: a rapid review. Emerg Med J 2016;33(3):194-9. doi: 10.1136/emermed-2015-204913

  • Kreindler SA. Policy strategies to reduce waits for elective care: A synthesis of international evidence. Br Med Bull 2010; doi: 10.1093/bmb/ldq014.

Organizational Decision-Making

  • Kreindler SA. What if implementation is not the problem? Exploring the missing links between knowledge and action. Int J Health Plann Manag 2016; 31(2): 208-226. doi: 10.1002/hpm.2277

  • Kreindler SA. Planning without action and action without planning? Examining a regional health system's efforts to improve patient flow, 1998–2013. Int J Health Plann Manag 2018; 33:e333–e343.

Primary Care and Physician–System Relations

  • Kreindler SA, Metge C, Struthers A, Harlos K, Charette C, Bapuji S, Beaudin P, Botting I, Katz A, Zinnick S. Primary care reform in Manitoba, Canada, 2011-15: Balancing accountability and acceptability. Health Policy 2019; 123(6): 532-537.

  • Kreindler SA, Struthers A, Metge CJ, Charette C, Harlos K, Beaudin P, Bapuji SB, Botting I, Francois J. Pushing for partnership: Physician engagement and resistance in primary care renewal. J Health Org Manag 2019; 33(2): 126-140.

The show also draws on other literature, though with no intent to provide a comprehensive survey of health policy issues.

Larry Saves Healthcare is also the topic of research on the potential of arts-based knowledge translation. Details and publications will be posted here when available.

About: Text

We gratefully acknowledge funding from Research Manitoba.

About: Text

We gratefully acknowledge that Larry Saves Healthcare was made on Treaty One territory, the original lands of Anishinaabeg, Cree, Oji-Cree, Dakota, and Dene peoples, and on the homeland of the Métis Nation

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