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Improving the alignment between the operating room department and the nursing wards : Changing the current operating room scheduling method in order to minimize the variability in bed utilization at the nursing wards

Sieverink, S.A. (2017) Improving the alignment between the operating room department and the nursing wards : Changing the current operating room scheduling method in order to minimize the variability in bed utilization at the nursing wards.

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Abstract:Health care costs are rising, the Dutch population is aging, and the government and health care insurers are cutting costs. These are only a few of the current developments in the Dutch health care sector, which obliges every hospital to take a closer look at their current processes. Medisch Spectrum Twente (MST) is one of the Dutch hospitals that needs to rearrange their processes in order to keep delivering the quality of care they do. The MST hospital found out their processes are too much organized around the specialties and departments instead of around the patient, which results in a lack of alignment between the several steps a patient follows through the hospital. Therefore, the hospital started an efficiency program where every step of the total chain of care, from the first patients visit up to their discharge, needs to be reviewed and improved. This research takes a closer look at the alignment between the most expensive department of the hospital, the operating room (OR) department, and several nursing wards. Personnel members of both departments encounter problems as an effect of a deficiency between the two departments. The OR planning department aims to maximize the OR utilization since these expensive resources need to be used as much as possible. However, they barely have any insight in the consequence of their schedule for the nursing wards. The personnel members at the nursing wards encounter a strongly fluctuating bed utilization at the wards, since the OR scheduling department does not consider the length of stay of the patients they schedule, and to which ward these patients will flow. Therefore, the main research question is: “How can the MST hospital reduce the variability in bed utilization at the nursing wards, while the OR capacity will be used in an efficient way?” The objective is to propose a new way of scheduling where the OR scheduling department can take into account the patient characteristics in order to minimize the variability at the nursing wards. Moreover, when a forecast can be made for the nursing departments of how many and what type of patients will enter their ward, a more accurate personnel planning can be made.
Item Type:Essay (Bachelor)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:30 exact sciences in general
Programme:Industrial Engineering and Management BSc (56994)
Link to this item:http://purl.utwente.nl/essays/73212
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