Health Care

The Danish health care expenditures amounted to 10.4 percent of GDP*, which is above the OECD average of 9.0 percent. At the same time, public spending on health care amounted to around 30% of the combined public budget**. The aging population now constitutes a challenge for an already expensive and pressured health care sector to provide good health care at reasonable costs.

In the Management Science division at DTU Management we employ tools from human factors and ergonomics, lean management, statistics, data mining, machine learning, econometrics, simulation and mathematical optimisation to support health care authorities in providing high quality care efficiently while factoring in the wellbeing of healthcare professionals.

The employment of a broad range of tools allows us to cover a full development cycle; starting from data analysis, model building and testing, all the way to implementation and adaptation of the models to a local context. We do this with a clear understanding of the impact on both patient care and work environment.

Emergency department planning, for example, requires such a multi-disciplinary perspective. The most eligible areas for improvement are identified through a data analysis that quantifies the past performance in terms of e.g. patient arrival patterns and throughput, waiting times, capacity usage of resources (such as personnel and beds). Proposals for improvement are designed by advanced mathematical optimisation models, focused on the areas identified in the first step. Next, simulation models enable analyzing the emergency department in a dynamic setting in different scenarios, and thereby allow validation of the proposed improvements. The data analysis provides essential input for the building of both simulation and optimisation models. Finally, the study of the human factors of implementation of these different plans and scenarios ensures that proposals not only work in theory, but also in practice. 

Examples of health care related projects completed or currently running in the Management Science division:

  • Personnel scheduling aimed at generating efficient work schedules satisfying the demand while obeying e.g. union requirements and striking a balance between efficiency and job satisfaction.
    • Nurse rostering (Rigshospitalet)
    • Assignment of pregnant women to midwives (Rigshospitalet)
    • Sundhedsplatformen, Effects of implementation (Nordsjællands Hospital)
    • Minimising risk of queues  (Acute phone 1813)
    • Improving care processes and work environment (Odense Universitetshospitel)
    • Optimizing relational coordination (Glostrup Hospital and Aalborg Hospital)
    • User-driven improvement of wellbeing and collaboration in operating rooms (Rigshospitalet)
    • A collaborative process for developing Hospital – municipality patient hand-off (Region H Psyk and Frederiksberg Kommune)
  • Facility logistics to ensure that e.g. the correct number of beds are always available and that scanners and other equipment in high demand is efficiently utilised.
    • Scheduling elective and emergency operations (Rigshospitalet)
    • Coherent patient pathways (Hvidovre Hospital)
    • Analysis and Simulation of Bed Cleaning and Distribution (Bispebjerg Hospital)
    • Pharmacy distribution (Bispebjerg Hospital)
    • Optimal logistics at Emergency Department (Bispebjerg Hospital)
    • Capacity Utilization at radiology Department (Nordsjællands Hospital)
    • Simulation of AGV Logistics Solution (Bispebjerg Hospital)
    • Applying lean thinking to improve efficiency in an emergency department (Nordsjællands Hospital)
    • Optimization of patient flow (Rigshospitalet)
    • Technology in Healtcare logistics (Herlev Hospital)
    • Improving Healthcare logistics processes (Herlev Hospital)
    • Table-top simulation of care-processes (Herlev Hospital)
  • Business process mining
    • Cross sector analysis diabetes-2 patients (Glostrup Hospital) (Planned)
    • Analysis of patient flows at a Maternity ward (Rigshospitalet)
  • Performance measurement
    • Management-By-Objectives in Healthcare (Sygehus Sønderjylland)
    • Development of a generic performance measurement model in an emergency department (Herlev and Nordsjællands Hospitals)

* Sources: *OECD, **Sundheds- og ældreministeriet 2016(The Ministry of Health)

Management Science staff involved in health care related research:

See contact information to the right


Allan Larsen
Professor, Deputy Head of Division, Head of Section
DTU Management
+45 45 25 60 73


Dario Pacino
Associate Professor
DTU Management
+45 45 25 15 12


Peter Jacobsen
Associate Professor Emeritus
DTU Management
+45 45 25 48 15


Thomas Jacob Riis Stidsen
Associate Professor
DTU Management
+45 45 25 44 49


Evelien van der Hurk
Associate Professor
DTU Management
+45 45 25 48 21