Development of a Modelling and Simulation Method Comparison and Selection Framework for Health Services Management

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Jun, Gyuchan T 
Morris, Zoe 
Eldabi, Tillal 
Harper, Paul 
Naseer, Aisha 

AbstractBackgroundThere is increasing recognition that modelling and simulation can assist the process of designing health care policies, strategies and operations. However, current use is limited and the questions of what methods to use and when remain underdeveloped.MethodsThis paper proposes a modelling and simulation method comparison and selection framework developed from a comprehensive literature review, the research team's extensive expertise and inputs from potential users.ResultsTwenty eight different methods were identified, characterised by their relevance to different application areas, project life cycle stages, types of output and levels of insight, and four input resources required (time, money, knowledge and data). The characterisation is presented in matrix forms to allow quick comparison and selection. This paper also highlights significant knowledge gaps in the existing literature when assessing the applicability of particular approaches to health services management, where modelling and simulation skills are scarce let alone money and time.ConclusionsA modelling and simulation method comparison and selection framework is developed to assist with the selection of methods appropriate to supporting specific decision making processes. In particular it addresses the issue of which method is most appropriate to which specific health services management problem, what the auser might expect to be obtained from the method, and what is required to use the method. In summary, we believe the framework adds value to the scarce existing literature on methods comparison and selection.


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