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Essays in Appointment Management

Harris, Shannon (2016) Essays in Appointment Management. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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Patients who no-show or who cancel their outpatient clinic appointments can be disruptive to clinic operations. Scheduling strategies, such as slot overbooking or servicing patients during overtime slots, may assist with mitigating such disruptions. In the majority of scheduling models, no-shows and cancellations are considered together, or cancellations are not considered at all. In this dissertation, I propose novel prediction models to forecast the probability of no-show and cancellation for patients. I present analyses to show that no-shows and cancellations are two different types of patient behavior, and should be treated separately when scheduling a patient. Additionally, I develop a multi-day, online, overbooking model that incorporates no-show and cancellation probabilities, and outlines how patients should be optimally overbooked in an outpatient clinic schedule to increase clinic service reward. I find that past history is an indicator of future no-show behavior for patients attending outpatient clinics, and that only a limited look-back window is needed in order to gain insight into patient’s future behavior. Advance appointment cancellations are more challenging to predict, and tend to occur at the beginning or at the end of an appointment’s lifecycle. The optimal overbooking strategy is a function of both the no-show and the cancellation probabilities, and affects both the day on which an overbooking may occur, and the appointment slot in which the patient is overbooked.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Harris, Shannonslhharris@gmail.comSLH1150000-0002-9877-165X
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairMay,
Committee MemberVargas,
Committee MemberShang,
Committee MemberBerg,
Committee MemberHampshire,
Date: 27 September 2016
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 20 April 2016
Approval Date: 27 September 2016
Submission Date: 26 July 2016
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 143
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Joseph M. Katz Graduate School of Business > Business Administration
Degree: PhD - Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: outpatient scheduling, no-show, cancellation, overbooking
Date Deposited: 27 Sep 2016 15:48
Last Modified: 15 Nov 2016 14:35


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