Professor Sally Brailsford, PhD.
Operations Research is good for your health
Hospitals, and healthcare systems generally, have been a massively popular application area for OR/IE modelling since the 1950s. The same methodologies and modelling approaches that have been used to such great effect in manufacturing, transportation, logistics, defence, and service industries such as call centres can also be used to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of healthcare delivery organizations. The healthcare sector faces exactly the same challenges as all these other sectors: the same constraints (time, money, resources, capacity) and the same objectives (basically, how to do more with less). This talk presents a non-technical overview of OR/IE modelling in healthcare, aimed at a general audience and focusing on the challenges faced by clinicians, hospital managers and healthcare planners. Arguably, some of these challenges are greater than in other sectors: in healthcare issues such as politics, ethics, governance, human behaviour and professional hierarchies may play a more important role than in manufacturing industry, for example. These challenges have led to the need for new OR/IE approaches: healthcare provides a fertile ground for methodological developments, forming a “virtuous circle” between theory and practice.
Having said this, the puzzling fact remains that despite a vast academic literature in health OR and a huge number of specialist conferences and health streams at major conferences, remarkably few academic journal papers report the model results actually being used in practice. There are of course many examples in the “grey” literature of modelling being undertaken by commercial consultancies, but every survey paper on health OR from the 1970s onwards has reported exactly the same finding. Unlike other sectors, none of these thousands of models are finding their way into routine practice. Many researchers, including myself, have studied this conundrum and have tried to identify the barriers and facilitators to implementing OR models in healthcare. In this talk I reflect on my personal experiences in this area over a 30-year career in OR, and address the question: Is healthcare really so very different from other sectors?
Prof. Dr. İhsan Sabuncuoğlu
Yeni nesil üniversiteler: Geleceğin gençleri için üniversiteleri nasıl tasarlamalıyız?