Student Competition Finalists Ready for Orlando

We’d like to extend our sincerest congratulations to the finalists of the 2017 SHS/FlexSim Student Simulation Competition. They’ve dedicated time, effort, and (most likely) a significant coffee budget to deliver the three strongest submissions from a pool of 19 teams in 6 different countries.

Now comes the fun part for these student participants.

Teams from the University of Washington, Bulacan State University (Philippines), and Western Michigan University will meet at HSPI 2017 in Orlando, FL, from March 1-3. These finalists will leave Orlando with a cash prize of up to $2,500 based on their finishing position.

But before the winner is announced, each of the three teams have one last thing to do: present. They’ll show their models and findings to a panel of judges with significant experience in and around healthcare systems. For some, though, this is the best part of the competition.

“My favorite part of this experience was getting to travel to a different state with real professionals in this field who were actually interested in what we accomplished as a team,” recalled Dana Scalf, a member of the winning Louisiana State University team from 2016. “It was awesome presenting to a room full of people who could actually use what we have been working so hard on.”

A challenging inpatient model

St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center.

This year, competition participants worked on a case provided by St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center (SJRMC) in Paterson, NJ. With more than 1.6 million patient visits in 2015, St. Joseph’s Healthcare System is the largest provider of charity care in the state; SJRMC is their flagship hospital. Due to significant growth in the region and the closure of several nearby hospitals, the hospital is faced with an increasing demand for inpatient beds.

When this demand has passed capacity, patients have had to board in the emergency department for up to 30 hours or longer.

Students participating in the 2017 competition had the unique opportunity to take on the role of consultants in a living, breathing project. The planning staff at SJRMC have commissioned a simulation study to discover how several identified factors play into the length of stay problem.

The models are ready. Now we get to see what valuable insights these student teams have uncovered.

1 Comment  

  • Terry Theman, MD, MEng

    This is indeed a challenging project. I am eager to hear the students’ presentations at the SHS Conference next month!

    February 15, 2017 - 9:58 am/