OR in the OR: Operations Research in the Operating Room

  • chair:

    Institutskolloquium of the IOR

  • place:

    Building 11.40, room 214

  • :

    December 15th, 2009

  • Referent:

    Prof. Erwin Hans, University of Twente (Netherlands)

  • Zeit:


OR in the OR: Operations Research in the Operating Room

With a background in manufacturing planning and scheduling, since 2003 I have ventured in the world of process optimization in hospitals. During these years I have involved other departments within our university, particularly from the faculty of Applied Mathematics, and set up collaborations with more than a dozen hospitals throughout the Netherlands.

In 2007 together we founded the Center for Healthcare Operations Improvement & Research (CHOIR: www.choir.utwente.nl). Currently, 7 PhD students each collaborate with one healthcare organization in order to take on research questions that stem from actual practice, approach these using OR/OMtechniques, and implement the outcomes in practice. The research has taken a lot of momentum, and also in teaching it now plays an important role: we have the only Netherlands’ Industrial Engineering master program in healthcare management and logistics.

In this presentation I will give a very brief outline of the research topics we focus on within CHOIR. Primarily, my talk will focus on operating room planning and scheduling - many aspects of this topic we have studied in collaboration with several (mostly academic) hospitals. I will discuss the problems and solution techniques for tactical and (offline) operational scheduling problems, and demonstrate some of the software we have developed to analyze operating theatre departments and test algorithms. If there is time, and interest from any teaching staff, I can discuss the ”Operating Room Manager Game”, a management game I use for teaching in our Industrial Engineering MSc program.