Assessing the queuing process using data envelopment analysis: an application in health centres

Komal A. Safdar, Ali Emrouznejad*, Prasanta K. Dey

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Queuing is one of the very important criteria for assessing the performance and efficiency of any service industry, including healthcare. Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) is one of the most widely-used techniques for performance measurement in healthcare. However, no queue management application has been reported in the health-related DEA literature. Most of the studies regarding patient flow systems had the objective of improving an already existing Appointment System. The current study presents a novel application of DEA for assessing the queuing process at an Outpatients’ department of a large public hospital in a developing country where appointment systems do not exist. The main aim of the current study is to demonstrate the usefulness of DEA modelling in the evaluation of a queue system. The patient flow pathway considered for this study consists of two stages; consultation with a doctor and pharmacy. The DEA results indicated that waiting times and other related queuing variables included need considerable minimisation at both stages.

Original languageEnglish
Article number32
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Medical Systems
Issue number1
Early online date11 Nov 2015
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2016

Bibliographical note

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  • appointment scheduling system
  • data envelopment analysis
  • healthcare
  • patient flow
  • queuing


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