POMDP planning applied in a generic simulation framework
Audrey Durand
Christian Gagné (Supervisor)
Daniel Reinharz (Co-supervisor)

The public health care system in the province of Quebec is currently reviewing the screening strategies in order to deserve a better service when dealing with different constraints such as the available budget or specific deadlines.

The decision-making process could be helped a lot by the simulation of all options in order to compare them directly within a short time and at a small cost.

A research team from the department of social and preventive medicine and from the department of electrical engineering and computer engineering at Laval University is actually working on the LSD project (Laboratory of Screening Simulation) to answer this question.


The project is essentially a very generic simulation core including some planning mechanisms.

The development of the core will follow the already established guidelines in simulation and will be innovative by offering different libraries intended to be re-arranged, modified and re-used in different contexts.

The planning module will be integrated to the simulator and will provide the possibility to simulate known strategies but also discover new options that could contribute to the improvement of the actual system.

POMDP (Partially Observable Markov Decision Process) planning approach will be used. Existent techniques will be studied, compared and modified to obtain the best trade-off according to the problem considered.


The result will be used to answer the questions related to the health care domain by simulating the actual screening strategies to compare them and study their efficiency. The planning system will contribute to the continuous search for strategies improvement.

The final product will be tested on three specific problems from the health care domain such as the prevention and screening of osteoporosis and the prenatal screening of Down Syndrome. This will support the core as a very generic system.

Even if the goal is to provide a simulator to the health care specialists, it will be designed generic enough to be used in many other domains.

Last modification: Oct 19 2009 2:48PM by audur2


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