In this tutorial task, you'll build more of the patient track for the health care clinic model to get some additional practice using the FlexSim Healthcare objects and activities.
In the first tutorial task, you learned how to use one of the activity sets to quickly set up the logic of your patient track. In this tutorial task, you'll learn how to build your own block of activities to create custom logic. Building a custom block of activities will help you better understand how the logic in FlexSim Healthcare models works.
When you're finished, your simulation model should look similar to the following image:
Up to this point, you've learned how to use one of the activity sets to create the logic for your patient track. In this step, you'll learn how to add activities from scratch to create custom logic. Your goal will be to create a phase in which an RN checks the patient's vitals in the PatientTrack process flow. In this phase, you'll design the logic that will instruct a nurse to come take the patient to the patient vitals area.
When you're finished, your process flow will look similar to the following image:
For now, you'll merely add and connect these activities to the process flow. You'll edit the properties to add logic in a later step.
To add and connect these activities:
|Acquire Location||Acquire Vitals Station|
|Acquire Staff||Acquire Vitals RN|
|Escort Person||Escort Patient to Vitals|
|Process||Check Patient Vitals|
|Release Location||Release Vitals Station|
|Acquire Location (first one)||Acquire Waiting Area|
|Walk||Walk to Waiting Area|
|Acquire Location (second one)||Acquire Vitals Station|
|Release Location||Release Waiting Area|
|Location Resource (first one)||Waiting Area|
|Location Resource (second one)||Vitals Station|
|Staff Resource||Vitals RNs|
Check that your process flow looks similar to the image at the beginning of this step.
Since you built your own custom set of activities in the previous step, not all of the properties will be automatically set up the way they were when you used an activity set. Activity sets are a great way to cut down the time it takes to build the logic for a FlexSim Healthcare model. However, it's also a good idea to understand how to set up activity logic yourself so that you can create your own custom logic if needed. This step will teach you how to set up this kind of logic.
In this step, you'll create the logic for the patient vitals phase of the patient track. If the vitals station is available, a nurse will escort the patient to the station and check the patient's vitals. If the vitals station is not available, the patient will wait in the waiting area.
The following is an overview of how each activity in the Check Vitals phase of the process flow will function:
|Activity or Shared Asset||Explanation|
|Waiting Area||This shared asset will link to the WaitingAreas group that you created in an earlier step.|
|Vitals Chair||This shared asset will link to the VitalsStations group that you created in an earlier step.|
|Vitals RN||This shared asset will link to the RNs group that you created in an earlier step.|
|Acquire Vitals Station (first one on the left)||This activity will attempt to acquire the vitals station location. If another patient is using the vitals station, the token will move to the Acquire Waiting Area activity and the patient will find a chair in the waiting room. If the vitals station is acquired, the token will move to the Acquire Vitals RN activity instead.|
|Acquire Waiting Area||This activity will attempt to acquire one of the chairs in the WaitingArea1 multi-location. When the location is free, the patient token will move to the Walk to Waiting Area activity.|
|Walk to Waiting Area||Once a chair in the WaitingArea1 multi-location has been acquired, this activity will tell the patient to walk to the specific chair it acquired.|
|Acquire Vitals Station (second one on the right)||This activity is almost identical to the previous Acquire Vitals Station activity. It will attempt to acquire the vitals station location for the patient. If the location is not free, the token will wait at this activity until it becomes available. When the location is free, the token will move to the Release Waiting Area activity.|
|Release Wait Area||This activity will release the specific chair from the WaitingArea1 location so that it is free for other patients to acquire.|
|Acquire Vitals RN||This activity will acquire a member of the RNs group. If all members of the RNs group are busy working on other tasks, the token will wait at this activity until an RN is free.|
|Escort Patient to Vitals||The vitals nurse will then escort the patient to the vitals station. You'll need to link this activity to the acquired vitals station and the vitals nurse in order to tell the patient where to go and with whom.|
|Check Patient Vitals||This activity will represent the amount of time it takes the patient to complete the check vitals process. You'll set that time to 20 seconds for now.|
|Release Vitals Station||This activity will release the vitals station so that it is free for other patients to acquire.|
To edit the activity properties:
Consider saving your simulation model at this point.
As was mentioned in the previous tutorial task, it's a good habit to test your model periodically. In general, the best time to test a simulation model is after you've built out a small portion of the model to ensure that everything is working as you expected it to work.
Both of the two phases of the patient track involve having patients wait in line or go to the waiting area if certain resources aren't available. In order to test whether those pieces of logic are working correctly, you'll need to add more than one patient to the model at a time. In this step, you'll adjust the PatientArrivals process flow so that it introduces two patients at a time rather than only one.
Now reset and run the simulation model:
As you watch the model run, notice that the first and second patient each enter and walk to the waiting line. While the first patient registers, the second patient waits in line. While the first patient is escorted by a nurse to the vitals station, the second patient enters the waiting room.
Notice also that the nurse and patients walk through the floor plan walls, taking the shortest distance between two points. You'll learn how to fix this problem in a future tutorial.
Up to this point, you've created a simulation model of a health care clinic in which a patient completes the registration and goes to a patient vitals station. As you saw in the last step of the tutorial, the patients and staff members sometimes walk through walls and objects. In the next tutorial task, you'll learn how to fix this problem using A* navigation. Continue on to Tutorial Task 1.3 - Add A* Navigation.