Professor Carter's presentation abstract and CV

Operations Research / Management Science in
Health Care

Professor Michael Carter

Mechanical & Industrial Engineering

5 Kings College Road

University of Toronto

Toronto, Ontario M5S 3G8

416 978-8661

Health Care is the number one industry in North America; bigger than automotive, telecommunications or steel. Total spending in 2001 was $106 billion up ($3,416 per person) or close to 10% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). In 2001 in the U.S., spending was $1.4 trillion dollars US ($5,021US per person), over 14% of the GDP. The US spends far more than any other country (as a percent of GDP). Health care systems all over the world are in the midst of a serious financial crisis, and the situation will likely get worse in the next few years. Demand is going up as the population ages, and costs are increasing as the drugs and technologies continue to get more complex and expensive.

Of course, it would help if there were more money available. However, I also firmly believe that the health care industry could be run a lot more efficiently. Operations Management is planning, coordinating, controlling and evaluating the use and allocation of health care resources. The goals are quality improvement, cost containment, greater effectiveness and increased efficiency. Over the past 15 years, I have supervised over 100 engineering students on projects in health care. In the past four years, hospitals have hired over 30 of my students. In this talk, I will describe a few examples, discuss opportunities, and outline where I believe that we need to go in the future.

Curriculum Vitae:

Michael Carter is a Professor in the Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering at the University of Toronto. He received his doctorate in Mathematics (Optimization) from the University of Waterloo in 1980. He has worked extensively in university timetabling, production scheduling and healthcare applications. His current research focus is in the area of healthcare resource modeling with a variety of projects in several hospitals, home care and mental health institutions. He was the winner of the Annual Practice Prize from the Canadian Operational Research Society (CORS) three times (1988, 1992 and 1996). In 2000, he received the CORS Award of Merit for lifetime contributions to Canadian Operational Research.  He also received an “Excellence in Teaching” Award from the University of Toronto Student Administrative Council. He is on the editorial board for the “Journal of Scheduling” and the journal “Health Care Management Science”. He is a member of the “Nursing Effectiveness, Utilization and Outcomes Research Unit” and a mentor in the “Health Care, Technology and Place” Program at the University of Toronto. He was a lecturer with the Project H.O.P.E. international program in Healthcare Quality in Central and Eastern Europe.