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Medicine and Health Sciences

2006

University of Pennsylvania

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Managing Patient Service In A Diagnostic Medical Facility, Linda V. Green, Sergei Savin, Ben Wang Jan 2006

Managing Patient Service In A Diagnostic Medical Facility, Linda V. Green, Sergei Savin, Ben Wang

Operations, Information and Decisions Papers

Hospital diagnostic facilities, such as magnetic resonance imaging centers, typically provide service to several diverse patient groups: outpatients, who are scheduled in advance; inpatients, whose demands are generated randomly during the day; and emergency patients, who must be served as soon as possible. Our analysis focuses on two interrelated tasks: designing the outpatient appointment schedule, and establishing dynamic priority rules for admitting patients into service.

We formulate the problem of managing patient demand for diagnostic service as a finite-horizon dynamic program and identify properties of the optimal policies. Using empirical data from a major urban hospital, we conduct numerical studies ...