TI work as a data scientist at Mayo Clinic in the Enterprise Office of Access Management (EOAM). Access management in health care generally is all about improving patient access to appointments and resources. Access management is also about optimizing provider schedules to meet their desired patient mix while providing timely access to patients. At Mayo Clinic, EOAM is focused on managing appointments and schedules in the outpatient setting.
What are some of the problems facing outpatient access management? There is a core function to outpatient access management related simply to balancing our capacity with demand: how many appointments have we had in the last month, and can we use past appointment volumes to predict future volumes? But at Mayo Clinic, the more important side to access management is what is best for the patient? We work to reduce appointment lag: the time between when the patient wants to be seen and when they actually get seen. We work to reduce itinerary lengths: if a patient has to travel a great distance, we want them to be able to come to a Mayo Clinic site, have access to the necessary specialists and tests, and then leave - all within a condensed time frame.