Operations management is a central topic to address standardization issues, redesign of patient and medical supplies processes and flows with the aim of eliminating or reducing variability. This work aims to contribute to the debate on hospitals’ ability to deal with the Covid-19 pandemic emergency. The experiences of seven healthcare organizations located in the most affected Italian regions were analyzed: Lombardy, Emilia-Romagna, Piedmont and Tuscany. There are six fundamental drivers managed by the healthcare organizations to tackle the crisis: i) the organizational structure and decision support systems; ii) hospital networks for the management of patient flows; iii) asset management and physical lay out; iv) the redesign of medical supplies flows; v) the skills of profession als; vi) new health technologies. The analysis revealed 10 fundamental lessons to be learned for operations management, enabling the healthcare managers and professionals to plan the responses to the next phases of the pandemic.
Keywords: Operations management, crisis management, healthcare organizations, Covid-19.