Journal of Healthcare Engineering

Journal of Healthcare Engineering / 2015 / Article

Research Article | Open Access

Volume 6 |Article ID 328476 | 32 pages | https://doi.org/10.1260/2040-2295.6.3.345

Comparison of Traditional and Open-Access Appointment Scheduling for Exponentially Distributed Service Time

Received01 Jun 2014
Accepted01 Apr 2015

Abstract

This paper compares the performance measures of traditional appointment scheduling (AS) with those of an open-access appointment scheduling (OA-AS) system with exponentially distributed service time. A queueing model is formulated for the traditional AS system with no-show probability. The OA-AS models assume that all patients who call before the session begins will show up for the appointment on time. Two types of OA-AS systems are considered: with a same-session policy and with a same-or-next-session policy. Numerical results indicate that the superiority of OA-AS systems is not as obvious as those under deterministic scenarios. The same-session system has a threshold of relative waiting cost, after which the traditional system always has higher total costs, and the same-or-next-session system is always preferable, except when the no-show probability or the weight of patients’ waiting is low. It is concluded that open-access policies can be viewed as alternative approaches to mitigate the negative effects of no-show patients.

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Copyright © 2015 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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