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UBC Theses and Dissertations

A simulation modeling technique for projecting future extened care bed requirements Kallstrom, Elizabeth


A simulation model was developed for the Greater Vancouver Regional Hospital District for the purpose of projecting future Extended Care Bed requirements. The model utilizes data which are not usually incorporated in such projections but which are critical for ensuring maximum accuracy of the projections. Length of stay and length of wait information are two such items. In 1980, the average length of stay in an Extended Care Unit was found to be 30.3 months and the average length of wait for admission to a unit was approximately 9 months within the G.V.R.H.D. The increase in the numbers of elderly in this population was projected to be 16,500 persons from 1981 to 1986 or a percentile increase from 11.7% of the total population to 12.4%. In order to maintain a constant waiting period of 9 months, an additional 300 Extended Care beds were estimated to be required by 1986. The length of the waiting list, or the queue, would increase slightly under such conditions. An additional 2,200 beds would be required to eliminate the waiting period completely and to deplete the queue. The effect of reducing the application rate was also investigated. Waiting period and queue length were very sensitive to such a change as evidenced by sharp reductions in both. The opposite was true when the application rate was increased; both waiting time and queue length increased considerably. The effects of varying the proportion of activated on-hold applicants and the time interval for additions of new beds were also investigated. The use of this model in forecasting Extended Care Bed requirements in the short term is discussed with a view to comparing these projection results to those of other forecasting methodologies employed in Canadian Metro regions. Future data requirements of the model are also discussed.

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