Date of Graduation

5-2012

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering

Degree Level

Undergraduate

Department

Industrial Engineering

Advisor

Rainwater, Chase E.

Reader

Pohl, Edward A.

Abstract

The shortage of critical medical supplies in healthcare facilities is of obvious concern to both medical professionals and patients. Speci cally, the growing concern in this area is motivated, at least in part, by our dependence on generic pharmaceuticals. In the absence of FDA restrictions on the production of critical generic goods (e.g. morphine), manufacturers possess little financial incentive to produce numerous products whose patents have expired, but remain critical to patient care. Therefore, faced with crippling shortages, hospitals are left seeking ad-hoc solutions for meeting patient demand of these items. This work considers quantitative response strategies to mitigate the impact of these shortages. Speci cally, lateral transshipments of supplies amongst cooperative hospitals are analyzed to assess their impact and utility with respect to the amount of met demand and the quality of service. In addition, a multi-objective optimization model is considered that off ers insight about how intelligently structured collaboration between hospitals can improve service levels and reduce unmet demand across the system while considering transportation costs. The combination of these analyses provides medical decision-makers with a fundamental level of intuition necessary to guide hospitals in their reaction to supply shortages.

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