News Features

Improving Kansas Health Clinics

K-State Engagement E-News, November/December 2009 (PDF)

by Aly Rodee, AmeriCorps*VISTA

Dr. David Ben-Arieh, professor, industrial and manufacturing systems engineering addressed a K-State audience on Thursday, October 29, where he demonstrated the use of the Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) for measuring the input and output methodology for Kansas health clinics. Ben-Arieh's work is a partnership with the Kansas Association for Medically Undeserved (KAMU). One of KAMU's objectives is aimed at growing, strengthening and sustaining the primary health care safety net in Kansas.

The DEA gives each clinic a rated score of efficiency and also assists in identifying how clinics can improve. The DEA categorizes key clinics and patients that require special attention. This attention can include the resources consumed by the clinics or the needs of the patient. The DEA provides benchmarks to help the clinics improve and provides guidelines and a databank to track the clinics improvement. The methodology gives exact improvements for each clinic. Ben-Arieh's initiative started as a need for assessing Kansas clinic practices. His work with KAMU is to address the development needs for clinics and provide them with the means necessary to improve upon their current system. His research is partially funded through a Center for Engagement and Community Development engagement incentive grant.