Date: 10 Jan 2013

Improving Access to Healthcare: Models of Adaptive Behavior

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Patient access to healthcare is a major problem area due to inadequate supplies and misallocation of resources including physicians, nurses, and hospital beds. Increasing patient demands due to an aging and more chronically ill population will exacerbate this situation, leading to longer delays for care, hurried treatment times, and adverse clinical outcomes. Though there is a significant operations literature focused on methods to mitigate these effects, suggested remedies may be ineffective due to adaptive behavior by both physicians and patients. This chapter will focus on the quantification and impact of such adaptive behavior on the ability to provide timely patient access to limited health services.