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Dynamic scheduling with due dates and time windows: an application to chemotherapy patient appointment booking

Yasin Gocgun () and Martin Puterman ()

Health Care Management Science, 2014, vol. 17, issue 1, 60-76

Abstract: We study a scheduling problem in which arriving patients require appointments at specific future days within a treatment specific time window. This research is motivated by a study of chemotherapy scheduling practices at the British Columbia Cancer Agency (Canada). We formulate this problem as a Markov Decision Process (MDP). Since the resulting MDPs are intractable to exact methods, we employ linear-programming-based Approximate Dynamic Programming (ADP) to obtain approximate solutions. Using simulation, we compare the performance of the resulting ADP policies to practical and easy-to-use heuristic decision rules under diverse scenarios. The results indicate that ADP is promising in several scenarios, and that a specific easy-to-use heuristic performs well in the idealized chemotherapy scheduling setting we study. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Keywords: Chemotherapy scheduling; Markov decision processes; Approximate dynamic programming (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2014
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DOI: 10.1007/s10729-013-9253-z

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