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Med Decis Making. 2005 Mar-Apr;25(2):199-209.

A clinically based discrete-event simulation of end-stage liver disease and the organ allocation process.

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  • 1Department of Industrial Engineering, University of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA.



The optimal allocation of scarce donor livers is a contentious health care issue requiring careful analysis. The objective of this article was to design a biologically based discrete-event simulation to test proposed changes in allocation policies.


The authors used data from multiple sources to simulate end-stage liver disease and the complex allocation system. To validate the model, they compared simulation output with historical data.


Simulation outcomes were within 1% to 2% of actual results for measures such as new candidates, donated livers, and transplants by year. The model overestimated the yearly size of the waiting list by 5% in the last year of the simulation and the total number of pretransplant deaths by 10%.


The authors created a discrete-event simulation model that represents the biology of end-stage liver disease and the health care organization of transplantation in the United States.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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