The Efficacy of Utility Functions for Multicriteria Hospital Case-Mix Planning. (arXiv:2308.07321v1 [cs.AI])

A new approach to perform hospital case-mix planning (CMP) is introduced in
this article. Our multi-criteria approach utilises utility functions (UF) to
articulate the preferences and standpoint of independent decision makers
regarding outputs. The primary aim of this article is to test whether a utility
functions method (UFM) based upon the scalarization of aforesaid UF is an
appropriate quantitative technique to, i) distribute hospital resources to
different operating units, and ii) provide a better capacity allocation and
case mix. Our approach is motivated by the need to provide a method able to
evaluate the trade-off between different stakeholders and objectives of
hospitals. To the best of our knowledge, no such approach has been considered
before in the literature. As we will later show, this idea addresses various
technical limitations, weaknesses, and flaws in current CMP. The efficacy of
the aforesaid approach is tested on a case study of a large tertiary hospital.
Currently UF are not used by hospital managers, and real functions are
unavailable, hence, 14 rational options are tested. Our exploratory analysis
has provided important guidelines for the application of these UF. It indicates
that these UF provide a valuable starting point for planners, managers, and
executives of hospitals to impose their goals and aspirations. In conclusion,
our approach may be better at identifying case mix that users want to treat and
seems more capable of modelling the varying importance of different levels of
output. Apart from finding desirable case mixes to consider, the approach can
provide important insights via a sensitivity analysis of the parameters of each



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