What is the scenario generator

The NHS Institute recognises the important contribution that modelling and simulation makes to design, planning and implementation of new health service processes.

Scenario generator is a software tool specifically designed to allow simulation of whole health and social care systems. It comes pre-configured with population and prevalence data, and with a number of generic pathways of care. Users can modify all the defaults, change existing pathways or create new ones and develop any number of what-if scenarios. The behaviour of each scenario can then be explored by simulating healthcare activity for one to 10 years or more. Detailed results for each part of the model are provided of activity, flow, capacity, queues and cost. For further details on how the software works see here.

The scenario generator software is designed to:

  • replicate the existing service configuration and care pathways in a health system
  • enable scenarios to be developed that reflect changes in population, health prevalence, service configuration and capacity, and models of care
  • through simulations run on those scenarios, examine the impact of those changes on flow, capacity, end-to-end transaction times (including delays and waits) and cost across the whole system
  • indicate where changes to one pathway might have impacts elsewhere in the whole system

Why is it important

Simulating existing and new models of healthcare helps the NHS to anticipate and plan for the impact of changing demands, to design more efficient and effective care pathways and to make more informed strategic decisions about the future of the healthcare system

What can it do for me?

The tool is intended primarily for commissioners, service planners and clinical teams, to help them to:

  • understand the consequence of, and to plan effectively for, changes to the way that healthcare will be delivered
  • explore the impact of population growth and migration, changes to demographics and disease prevalence on their existing and future models of service delivery
  • test possible strategic approaches to reconfiguration of services, such as the impact of reducing referral rates into secondary care
  • design and test the performance of proposed changes in clinical practice (e.g. new referral guidelines, care pathways, models of care, high impact changes) on the performance of their local health system

Further information

How scenario generator can help

How scenario generator works

Scenario generator project