BPMN Coordination and Devs Network Architecture for Healthcare Organizations

BPMN Coordination and Devs Network Architecture for Healthcare Organizations

Mariem Sbayou (University of Bordeaux, Bordeaux, France), Gregory Zacharewicz (IMT - Mines Alès, France), Youssef Bouanan (University of Bordeaux, Bordeaux, France) and Bruno Vallespir (University of Bordeaux, Bordeaux, France)
DOI: 10.4018/IJPHIM.2019010106
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The adoption of business processes (BP) can help healthcare providers in structuring the way information systems and people have to interact. Business process management (BPM) is a methodology that structures a way of representing system processes. At the same time, the human resources are organized in identified or implicit structures that allows individuals to exchange information either related to their work function or not. Nevertheless, the human organizations structure and communication channels are not, up to now, fully captured by the information systems. It may lead to losing part of the useful information exchanged by participants. Accordingly, this article focuses on multi-agent solutions representing social networks in the healthcare domain associated with BPM of patient pathways. The purpose is to study the feasibility of combining BP with agent-based models in order to better improve performance, manage resources, and ensure coordination between them.
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Healthcare processes or pathways are typically described informally by text description or by semi-formal languages (Eshuis et al., 2010). A process is generally defined as a sequence of events that uses inputs to produce outputs. Besides, a business process is an activity or set of activities that will accomplish a specific organizational goal. Also, it is considered as a sequence of performed steps that drive information to produce goods and/or provides services. The business process needs to be managed and controlled; it attests the need to use a business process management methodology. According to (Van Der Aalst, Ter Hofstede, and Weske, 2003) business process management (BPM) includes methods, techniques, and tools to support the design, enactment, management, and analysis of operational business processes.

It can be considered as a formalization of classical Workflow Management (WFM) systems and approaches. BPM solutions enable enterprise to measure and standardize processes and also provide reusable processes that can be networked. In this context, several languages are used for BPM; the most used one nowadays is Business Process Modeling Notation (BPMN). BPMN has been proposed by the Business Process Modelling Initiative (BPMI) and is currently maintained by the Object Management Group (OMG 2003) that provides this standard for Information Technology (IT) and business actors, it is an increasingly significant standard for process modeling and has received high attention and uptake in BPM practice (Recker 2008). Besides, it is an established standard for business process modelling in industry and economy that is frequently supported by a computer program which enables a quite easy graphical description of complex processes (Scheuerlein et al., 2012).

Furthermore, the analysis of performance of BPMN is crucial, as it helps Business analysts to predict whether the goal can be achieved or not. For this reason, simulation has been identified as a key technique for BP performance analysis (Antonacci et al., 2016). It can be important for business processes as it helps and supports the decision-making process, reduces cost that can occurs in the case wrong decisions haven’t been anticipated and as final objective provides a good quality of services.

As argued in (Antonacci et al., 2016), the use of BPM in healthcare sector is becoming a key enabler for the improvement of healthcare processes, since the healthcare environment is becoming more dynamic and volatile, and follows more complex processes, the combination of agent based model with business process may be efficient for resolving simulation’s limitations in BP in terms of resource allocation, in the other hand, managing the availability of resources in healthcare sector is a very challenging problem with very little research attention. For this reason, the use of business process modeling combined with the adoption of simulation-based analysis provides a cost effective, accurate, and rapid way to evaluate alternatives before committing the required effort and resources (Tumay, 1996; Nakatumba, Rozinat, and Russell, 2009).

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