Controlling healthcare Queues

Abstract

Queuing problems abound in almost all service systems. Typical analysis or design approaches are to statically determine service capacity to achieve acceptable mean performance levels, such as mean number or time in queue, resulting in periods of poor service spikes and unattractive utilization-service-cost tradeoffs. We explore the use of engineering control theory to optimally adapt service capacities to achieve specified mean and threshold performance levels, including optimal minimal cost controllers under a variety of assumptions.