Authors: Jose Sepulveda, Waldemar Karwowski, Francisco Ramis, Pablo Concha
We present the approach taken to schedule patient arrivals in the simulation of specialty clinics and their associated Ambulatory Surgery unit at the Orlando VA Medical Center (OVAMC), Orlando, Florida, USA. In these clinics, patients arrive by appointment. A primary care provider (PCP) electronically requests an appointment (consult) with a specialist and a reviewer decides whether and when the consult takes place. Requests for new patient appointments arrive electronically 24-7. The decision depends on the provider?s availability. A clerk schedules the patients. Once a scheduling slot is found, a message is sent to the patient who then shows up at the scheduled time. If a specialist is not available within a reasonable time horizon (the goal is within two weeks), the request may be transferred to a community provider on a fee basis. We discuss issues associated to slot sizing and overbooking policy. The measures of performance include percent of requests scheduled within a week and percent of patients seen by the provider within two weeks.