• Acute coronary syndrome: What is the cost-effectiveness of prevention, point-of-care technology and telemonitoring?

      Van Dyck, Walter; Gassull, Daniel; Vértes, Gergely; Jain, Prateek; Palaniappan, Muhilan; Schulthess, Duane; Tambuyzer, Erik; Hudson, Richard; Moran, Nuala (Health Policy and Technology, 2012)
      This study is a cost-analysis that calculates the impact of three interventions for patients identified as ‘at risk’ for Acute Coronary Syndrome - a cardio-vascular exercise programme, point-of-care digital diagnostics, and telemonitoring adherence tools. The methodology utilizes a model of the annualized costs of ACS for the entire treatment value chain, and measures the impact of the three interventions by the change in treatment cost, incremental net benefit, and QALY. The results demonstrate that the largest impact is measured when all three interventions are utilized simultaneously producing a cumulative savings of €4424 and 0.126 QALY per patient. We also find a significant decrease in Emergency Room visits by 15% and changes in rates of utilization of Catharization (−59%), Angioplasty (−59%), Bypass (−17%), Medication (−14%) and Rehabilitation (−13%).
    • Admission scheduling in acute care hospitals: Does the practice fit with the theory?

      Gemmel, Paul; Van Dierdonck, Roland (International Journal of Operations and Production Management, 1999)
    • Barco implements platform-based product development in its healthcare division

      Boute, Robert; Van den Broeke, Maud; Deneire, Kristof (Interfaces, 2018)
      In this article, we present how Barco, a global technology company, used an operations research optimization model, which was supported by an efficient solution method, to implement platforms—common structures from which sets of products could be made—for the design and production of its high-tech medical displays. Our optimization model captures all cost aspects related to the use of platforms, thus, it is an objective tool that considers the input from marketing, sales, research and development (R&D), operations, and the supply chain. This comprehensive view allowed Barco to avoid the excessive costs that may result from the implementation of an incorrect platform. Our model supported Barco in determining the elements that should comprise each platform, the number of platforms to develop, and the products to derive from each platform. The results of the project led to reductions in safety stock and increased flexibility due to the use of platforms: R&D can now introduce twice as many products using the same resources, thus increasing Barco's earnings by over 5 million euros annually and reducing product introduction time by nearly 50 percent.
    • Characterisation and generation of nurse scheduling problem instances

      Vanhoucke, Mario; Maenhout, Broos (2005)
      In this paper, we propose different complexity indicators for the well-known nurse scheduling problem (NSP). The NSP assigns nurses to shifts per day taking both hard and soft constraints into account. The objective is to maximize the nurses' preferences and to minimize the total penalty cost from violations of the soft constraints. The problem is known to be NP-hard. Due to its complexity and relevance in practice, the operations research literature has been overwhelmed by different procedures to solve the problem. The complexity has resulted in the development of several (meta-)heuristic procedures, able to solve a NSP instance heuristically in an acceptable time limit. The practical relevance has resulted in a never-ending amount of different NSP versions, taking practical, case-specific constraints into account. The contribution of this paper is threefold. First, we describe our complexity indicators to characterize a nurse scheduling problem instance. Secondly, we develop a NSP generator to generate benchmark instances to facilitate the evaluation of existing and future research techniques. Finally, we perform some preliminary tests on a simple IP model to illustrate that the proposed indicators can be used as predictors of problem complexity. Keywords: Nurse scheduling, Benchmark instances, Problem classification
    • De onthaalomgeving vanuit een service-operations perspectief

      Cardoen, Brecht; Gemmel, Paul; Robberecht, Rein (Hospitals.be, 2013)
    • Scheduling operating rooms: Achievements, challenges and pitfalls

      Samudra, Michael; Van Riet, Carla; Demeulemeester, Erik; Cardoen, Brecht; Vansteenkiste, Nancy; Rademakers, Frank (Journal of Scheduling, 2016)
      In hospitals, the operating room (OR) is a particularly expensive facility and thus efficient scheduling is imperative. This can be greatly supported by using advanced methods that are discussed in the academic literature. In order to help researchers and practitioners to select new relevant articles, we classify the recent OR planning and scheduling literature into tables regarding patient type, used performance measures, decisions made, OR up- and downstream facilities, uncertainty, research methodology and testing phase. Based on these classifications, we identify trends and promising topics. Additionally, we recognize three common pitfalls that hamper the adoption of research results by stakeholders: the lack of a clear choice of authors on whether to target researchers (contributing advanced methods) or practitioners (providing managerial insights), the use of ill-fitted performance measures in models and the failure to understandably report on the hospital setting and method-related assumptions. We provide specific guidelines that help to avoid these pitfalls. First, we show how to build up an article based on the choice of the target group (i.e., researchers or practitioners). Making a clear distinction between target groups impacts the problem setting, the research task, the reported findings, and the conclusions. Second, we discuss points that need to be considered by researchers when deciding on the used performance measures. Third, we list the assumptions that need to be included in articles in order to enable readers to decide whether the presented research is relevant to them.