Michelle Alvarado, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering
Ph.D., Industrial Engineering, Texas A&M University, 2014
M.E., Industrial Engineering, Texas A&M University, 2010
B.S., Industrial Engineering, The University of Alabama, 2008
The aim of my research is to develop theory, models, algorithms, and practical tools to improve the operation of complex systems under uncertainty. My main research interests are in integrated simulation and optimization methods applied to healthcare decision-making.
I am currently studying healthcare policy and how hospitals and clinics adapt their operational policies and procedures in response to the new patient-centered health focus established by the Affordable Care Act. More specifically, I have most recently studied how the Hospital Readmission Reduction Program (HRRP) impacts health policy and the behavior of hospitals and post-acute care facilities. My initial work in this area has been the development and analysis of a Hospital-Insurer game theoretic penalty-incentive model to reduce hospital readmissions. I am now working on new stochastic programming and multi-method simulation models to analyze the impact of HRRP and other health policies on the flow of patients to post-acute care facilities.
In my dissertation work, I developed a simulation and optimization methodology for scheduling chemotherapy appointments under uncertainty. In other prior works, I have contributed new algorithms to mean-risk stochastic integer programming, developed a Markov decision process and queueing model for condition-based maintenance of degrading servers, studied remote health systems for the management of diabetes and other chronic diseases, and the problem of inpatient discharge planning for a hospital ward.