Skip to main content

Gazing through time and beyond the health sector: Insights from a system dynamics model of cardiovascular disease in Australia.

Objective: To construct a whole-of-system model to inform strategies that reduce the burden of cardiovascular disease (CVD) in Australia.

Despite a dramatic decline in death rate of cardiovascular disease (CVD) over the last few decades, CVD remains the leading cause of death in Australia and the rate of decline has slowed.

Read Research Paper

Reducing childhood overweight and obesity: Can the target be reached by 2025?

The increasing prevalence of childhood overweight and obesity is raising significant concern about lasting health effects on individuals, as well as social and economic impacts.

Target setting for reductions in prevalence can have the advantages of focusing policy and program efforts and eliciting cooperation in responding to challenging problems such as childhood overweight and obesity..

Read Research Paper

Vignettes Apparent in Surviving Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma

“I was concerned about how well prepared I was to withstand the treatment, about the burdens I would impose upon my family and friends, and what to expect in the weeks ahead. I’m writing this because along the way I found some System Dynamics tools to be quite helpful in navigating a difficult journey back to health.

I hope that my experiences in this application of the tools we use in practice can help someone else. Further, perhaps we can raise some questions which could benefit from a more rigorous approach.

I want to offer my heartfelt thanks to my medical team, Dr. Naomi Mackinlay, Nurse Helen Blackburn, all the staff at Northern Cancer Institute, North Shore Private & Public Hospitals and last but not least all my family and friends without whose support I would not have gotten though this ordeal alive…” Mark Heffernan, CEO Dynamic Operations

Read Research Paper

Psychiatric beds and suicide rates - System Dynamic Modelling

The past decade has seen debate regarding the impact of reductions in psychiatric beds on suicide rates and the potential effect of reallocation of acute hospital funding to community based psychosocial, primary, and community health services (1–5).

The debate centers around the key questions of whether there is a threshold at which reductions in beds start to adversely impact suicide rates, where that threshold lies, and therefore the minimum number of beds per 100,000 population required. The answers remain elusive and difficult to study in the real world…

Read Research Paper

Systems modelling and simulation to inform strategic decision making for suicide prevention in rural New South Wales (Australia)

The need to understand and respond to the unique characteristics and drivers of suicidal behaviour in rural areas has been enabled through the Australian Government’s 2015 mental health reforms facilitating a move to an evidence-based, regional approach to suicide prevention.

A key challenge has been the complex decision making environment and lack of appropriate tools to facilitate the use of evidence, data and expert knowledge in a way that can inform contextually appropriate strategies that will deliver the greatest impact.

Systems modelling and simulation offers significant potential for regional decision makers to better understand and respond to the unique characteristics and drivers of suicidal behaviour in their catchments and more effectively allocate limited health resources.

Read Research Paper

Webinar flyer - Population model

Simple models of local, regional and national population dynamics are often the
backbone and the starting place of larger social, ecological, technological and health
system dynamics models. Their embedded nature means they are often overlooked as a potential source of powerful insights on their own.

In this seminar we will present a range of population models, from single stock models to more complex models incorporating demographic characteristics and discuss ways in which these models can generate powerful insights in a variety of different contexts such as the current global COVID-19 pandemic…

Read Research Paper

A decision support tool to inform local suicide prevention activity in Greater Western Sydney (Australia)

Objectives: This study describes the development of a decision support tool to identify the combination of suicide prevention activities and service priorities likely to deliver the greatest reductions in suicidal behaviour in Western Sydney
(Australia) over the period 2018–2028…

Read Research Paper

Aircraft Fleet Management Using Systems Thinking

The application of integrated logistics management for a weapon system within the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) has highlighted the need to develop decision support tools.

Optimization of the management of the RAAF’s F-111 aircraft fleet requires understanding of the dynamics of a multivariable system. This fleet system is also constrained by finite economic resources which must also be optimized.

To achieve this optimized solution many heuristic business rules must be included in the enterprize model to ensure that output trend data is truely representative of the F-111 fleet system dynamics…

Read Research Paper

Fleet Doctor To Airpower 2100

The Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) operates a fleet of 36 F-111 aircraft based at Amberley in South East Queensland. The fleet is a multivariate system with complex dynamics constrained by economic and human resources.

In 1994, the aircraft fleet was experiencing declining availability and operational capability. The implementation of long term strategic planning was extremely difficult due to the complexity of the system and the rotation of military staff on a three yearly basis…

Read Research Paper

Surfacing the hidden demand for opioid dependent treatments for drug policy makers

Illicit drug policy has been the subject of important SD studies addressing the interaction between policing and medical treatment and estimating the prevalence of national cocaine use.

Here we modeled the impacts of policy changes associated with wider use of newer opioid pharmacotherapies besides methadone. These newer drugs allow less supervision of dosing and changes in the mix of prescribing and dispensing arrangements…

Read Research Paper

National Medicines Use

The Australian Government is required to report every five years on the impact of current fiscal policies on future generations. The first Intergenerational Report (IGR) in 2002 projected future Federal income and expenditure for the next forty years
based on expected demographic changes due to the baby boomers effect of increased fertility rates from 1946-1973.

The projected growth in GDP was 2.5 times while the federal Government outlays on prescription medicines through the universal Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) was expected to grow fifteen-fold by 2042…

Read Research Paper

Enquire Today

To find out more about the problems we’ve help solve, get in touch with Mark Heffernan.