Operations Research Techniques in Management of Samples Transport to the Clinical Laboratory
Currently, the model is based on the Clinical Laboratory. It is a great centre that performs almost all of the techniques. Thanks to the automation of them. These laboratories receive samples from centres that often are some kilometers away. Time spent between collection and processing must be as short as possible and this is a requirement to care about in order to process the samples in optimal conditions. Transport logistic factor is essential to achieve the right balance between optimal
... etween optimal quality of the specimens and efficiency in managing resources. Our laboratory attends 96 centres in an area of high population density and intricate road network. We considered planning the transport paths and timetables based on a branch of mathematics called Operations Research. The aim was to plan routes from and to the laboratory that covered the specimen transport with the shortest possible time. Material and Methods: In January 2012 we planned restructuring transport routes according to two methods applied to solve the TSP problems: the nearest neighbour method and the edge classified. Although these are not top methods, they are useful to control the time spent between the sample collection centre and the laboratory applying operational research methods. Results: We identified that 12% of the paths used excessive time to reach the laboratory (more than 90 minutes). These routes were modified applying the nearest neighbour method.