Health Care Management Science

, Volume 16, Issue 2, pp 152–166 | Cite as

Tactical resource allocation and elective patient admission planning in care processes

  • Peter J. H. Hulshof
  • Richard J. Boucherie
  • Erwin W. Hans
  • Johann L. Hurink


Tactical planning of resources in hospitals concerns elective patient admission planning and the intermediate term allocation of resource capacities. Its main objectives are to achieve equitable access for patients, to meet production targets/to serve the strategically agreed number of patients, and to use resources efficiently. This paper proposes a method to develop a tactical resource allocation and elective patient admission plan. These tactical plans allocate available resources to various care processes and determine the selection of patients to be served that are at a particular stage of their care process. Our method is developed in a Mixed Integer Linear Programming (MILP) framework and copes with multiple resources, multiple time periods and multiple patient groups with various uncertain treatment paths through the hospital, thereby integrating decision making for a chain of hospital resources. Computational results indicate that our method leads to a more equitable distribution of resources and provides control of patient access times, the number of patients served and the fraction of allocated resource capacity. Our approach is generic, as the base MILP and the solution approach allow for including various extensions to both the objective criteria and the constraints. Consequently, the proposed method is applicable in various settings of tactical hospital management.


Health care Tactical planning Resource capacity planning Patient admission planning Mixed Integer Linear Programming (MILP) 



This research is inspired by multiple Dutch (academic) hospitals, a.o. ‘Reinier de Graaf Groep’, ‘Zorg Groep Twente’, ‘Deventer Ziekenhuis’, ‘Medisch Spectrum Twente’ and ‘Universitair Medisch Centrum Utrecht’. We thank involved clinical staff and managers from these hospitals.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Center for Healthcare Operations Improvement and Research (CHOIR)University of TwenteEnschedeThe Netherlands

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