Partially partitioned templating strategies for outpatient specialty practices

Miao Bai, Bjorn Berg, Esra Sisikoglu Sir, Mustafa Y. Sir

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Templating strategies specify policies on capacity allocation and appointment booking, which are central to patient access management in outpatient specialty practices (SPs). In the widely implemented partitioned templating strategy, appointment capacity is allocated exclusively to each patient group defined by a combination of patient attributes and medical conditions, which often results in utilization challenges for SPs. Motivated by problems faced by an SP within a large academic medical center, we propose partially partitioned templating strategies that cluster patient groups into access classes and allocate appointment slots to these classes. We formulate a two-stage stochastic optimization model to simultaneously optimize decisions on patient group clustering and capacity allocation in the templating strategy design. We develop an efficient solution algorithm for the problem, which otherwise poses a combinatorial challenge, based on Benders' cuts and an anticipatory approximation. Numerical experiments using real-world data show that the partially partitioned strategies outperform benchmark strategies used by SPs through maintaining a balance of high capacity utilization and providing timely access for priority patients. In addition, we study a wide range of SP setups for transferable insights on templating strategies based on practice specifics.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)301-318
Number of pages18
JournalProduction and Operations Management
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Production and Operations Management Society.


  • outpatient specialty practice
  • patient access management
  • stochastic optimization
  • templating strategy


Dive into the research topics of 'Partially partitioned templating strategies for outpatient specialty practices'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this