Tag Archives: patient flow

Optimizing distributed processes locally, and why it may not be a good idea

In healthcare, many tend to work in silos, through narrow specialization or a physical area of focus, be it the ED, an OR, the Cath Lab, Labor and Delivery, and so on. As such, staff driven to reduce harm and waste embark on process improvement (PI), frequently thinking that fixing their own workflows and work-spaces will do. This is often not the case, and bears rethinking from a broader perspective.
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Performance modeling: patient registration example

Queueing theory and modeling provide us with “closed-form” analytical solutions to problems involving, reasonably enough, queues.  Indeed, this type of performance-focused modeling is central to properly planning and sizing infrastructure and facilities of many types, from a new hospital building with interconnected services to servers, bridges, and routers on a distributed communications network, checkout registers at a retailer, toll booths (and lanes) on an interstate, conveyor belts at an airport, or teller and drive-through windows at a bank. Complex models can be joined to form queueing networks.

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