Research Seminar Series | Health care management: the role and potential role of models in decision-making | Thursday 8 September 2016

Presented by Dr Mark Mackay and Dr Josephine Varney, School of Medicine, Flinders University

Date: Thursday 8 September 2016

Time: 1-2pm

Location: Room 526, Level 5 Hughes Building, North Terrace Campus

No RSVP required, all welcome!

Abstract: In this talk, we discuss how we use decision making in modelling our complex system – health care. In our modelling process, we divide decision making into the following four steps: 1. Determine your goal, 2. Collect information, 3. Turn information into knowledge through analysis, and 4. Decide. This process is similar to some commonly used psychology such as GOFER and DECIDE.  However, in complex systems this is rarely a linear process; lack of data can make certain goals impossible, information may cause you to change your goal etc.  Further in a complex system it is rarely possible to list (or evaluate) each possible alternative action; rather we often look for actions which will take us in a positive direction.

Speakers: Dr Mackay is the Acting Head of Health Care Management at Flinders University and holds a visiting research fellowship at the University of Adelaide. He has degrees in science, economics, commerce and a PhD in psychology. He has 25 years of experience in the application of multi-disciplinary applied research projects in various industries, including the health sector. He convenes Cumberland.au – a collaboration involving clinicians, mathematicians, statisticians, computer scientists and others who aim to improve the health system through the use of operations research, systems thinking and design thinking. Mark is a recipient of the Premier’s International Research Fund grant which has enabled modelling of the RAH ICU and General Medicine, the process of cardiac treatment, emergency department activity and the beginnings of a system model for the mental health service. Dr Varney has a PhD in Mathematics, an MBA, and an Honours degree in Chemical Engineering. She came to mathematics after working for 15 years as a process engineer in the manufacturing industry. She is now combining her knowledge of processes and mathematics to health care modelling.

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