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A medical resource allocation model for serving emergency victims with deteriorating health conditions. (English) Zbl 1345.91015
Summary: Large-scale disasters typically result in a shortage of essential medical resources, and thus it is critical to optimize resource allocation to improve the quality of the relief operations. One important factor that has been largely neglected when optimizing the available medical resources is the deterioration of victims’ health condition in the aftermath of a disaster; e.g., a victim’s health condition could deteriorate from mild to severe if not treated promptly. In this paper, we first present a novel queueing network to model this deterioration in health conditions. Second, we provide both analytical solutions and numerical illustrations for this queueing network. Finally, we formulate two resource allocation models in order to minimize the total expected death rate and total waiting time, respectively. Numerical examples are provided to illustrate the properties of optimal policies.

MSC:
91B32 Resource and cost allocation (including fair division, apportionment, etc.)
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