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Laps Care: an operational system for staff planning of home care
Optimal Solutions AB, Linköping, Sweden.
Linköping University, Department of Mathematics, Optimization . Linköping University, The Institute of Technology.
Linköping University, Department of Mathematics, Optimization . Linköping University, The Institute of Technology.
2006 (English)In: European Journal of Operational Research, ISSN 0377-2217, Vol. 171, no 3, 962-976 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The health care system in Sweden and many other countries is facing increasing costs. The major reason is the changing age distribution of the population with more elderly people in need of support. At the same time, health care systems are often very labor and staff intensive. In this paper, we focus on a staff planning problem arising in Sweden where people receive home care from the local authorities. The objective is to develop visiting schedules for care providers that incorporate some restrictions and soft objectives. Each visit has a particular task to be performed, for example: cleaning, washing, personal hygiene and/or nursing activities. Each staff member has skills and each client should, if possible, be visited by the same contact person. The operational situation is continuously changing and planning is done each day. We describe the development of a decision support system Laps Care to aid the planners. The system consists of a number of components including information data bases, maps, optimization routines, and report possibilities. We formulate the problem using a set partitioning model and, for a solution method, we make use of a repeated matching algorithm. The system is currently in operation at a number of home care organizations. We report on the practical impact of the system in the health care organization which was involved in the development. The savings are considerably in terms of saved planning time and in the quality of the routes, as well as the measured quality for the clients. Numerical experiments of the system are presented.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2006. Vol. 171, no 3, 962-976 p.
Keyword [en]
health care; home care; staff planning; modelling; heuristics; optimization; practice of OR
National Category
Social Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-53494DOI: 10.1016/j.ejor.2005.01.011OAI: diva2:289833
Available from: 2010-01-25 Created: 2010-01-25 Last updated: 2012-11-22
In thesis
1. Application of operations research in operative planning in the forest industry
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Application of operations research in operative planning in the forest industry
2007 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The focus of this thesis is the use of Operations Research for pplications in the forest industry. Optimization models and methods have been developed for problems in the forest supply chain and they have been integrated in decision support systems. The problems considered in this thesis are operative with a planning horizon of less than a month. Short solution times for the methods and the feasibility of the models used are important aspects. The body of this thesis consists of eight research papers where six of them consider operative problems and follows the forest supply chain. The industrial applications include routing of forwarders, routing of logging trucks, a process control problem, and roll cutting problems. The other two papers consider an operative planning problem in the home care sector. They are spin offs from one of the other projects in this thesis. In these applications both linear and nonlinear problems occur.

The forwarding problem is to decide routes for forwarders to pick up the small piles of logs the harvesters have left in the harvest areas. The forwarders then put the logs adjacent to forest roads. The logging truck problem is to decide routes for logging trucks to pick up the piles created by the forwarders and transport them to demand points, for example pulp or paper mills. The process control problem appear in the bleaching stage of a pulp mill where the control variables are the bleaching chemical charges. The cost of bleaching chemicals is minimized while a finishing brightness within target values is ensured. Mainly two roll cutting problems are studied. One is to minimize the number of cutting patterns and one is to minimize the number of reels when defects in the papper reels are considered. The solution methods developed for the forwarding problem have also been applied to a routing problem which appears in staff planning for home care operations.

The different DSS developed and implemented have been tested and several are in daily industrial use. In each of the papers, we have developed robust OR models and quick and effective OR methods. The savings from using the systems vary but are typically in the range 5-20%.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Matematiska institutionen, 2007. 31 p.
Linköping Studies in Science and Technology. Dissertations, ISSN 0345-7524 ; 1104
operative planning, routing, forestry, modelling, Decision Support System, optimization, OR in practice
National Category
Computational Mathematics
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-8806 (URN)978-91-85831-91-3 (ISBN)
Public defence
2007-05-30, C3, Hus C, Campus Valla, Linköpings Universitet, Linköping, 10:10 (English)
Available from: 2007-12-04 Created: 2007-12-04 Last updated: 2012-11-22

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