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  Corporation Crushes Working FOSS EMR
Interesting Developments Posted by Ignacio H. Valdes, MD, MS on Thursday May 25, 2006 @ 01:08 PM
from the interesting-developments dept.
Kevin Toppenberg writes on the hardhats list: I'm frustrated and need to vent a bit. My medical group now consists of 2 office complexes--the main office and my satellite office. At the end of this month, most of the doctors (those in the main office) will be changing management such that they become part of a nearby hospital. That hospital, in turn, is part of a much larger multi-state healthcare network. So the hospital is going to redo the network connections, bringing hospital-level security. Everything has to be standardized. And guess what? There is "zero possibility" that a linux server will be allowed on that network. And if I upgraded to the internet-capable CPRS client, and put my linux server on a separate network, even that would have to go through a (lengthy) coporate approval process which I doubt would be successful. So in a week, my main office will go from having a cost-effective opensource EMR, back to a point where transcriptionists type up notes in Word, print, then delete the file. What a waste! Supposedly "in 6 months" there is going to be a corporate-wide roll out of some other EMR with lots of bells and whistles. Who knows how that will work out..."

I don't even know who to be upset at. I understand the hospital's need to standardize and secure. But it seems that for them, it is 2 or 3 large steps backwards.

I will continue to use VistA in my office for now.

It's fair to say that I'm ticked off...


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  • The Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them.
    ( Reply )

    Re: Working FOSS EMR Crushed by Re-organization
    by Ignacio H. Valdes, MD, MS on Thursday May 25, 2006 @ 10:17 PM
    I feel your pain Kevin, I'm receiving a similar non-sensical run around trying to get a local data feed from an IDX/Allscripts EMR. -- IV
    [ Reply to this ]
    • Re: Schools too...
      by Ed Montgomery on Tuesday June 13, 2006 @ 01:25 PM

      I feel the pain as well...

      As a high school computer teacher who has been teaching using linux for the past 5 years in one of the largest school boards in North America(the Toronto District School Board), I am now being bullied to use M$ junk...

      Where are the politicians with some backbone to stand up to these monopolist thugs?

      Ed Montgomery Monarch Park Collegiate Toronto, Ontario, Canada

      [ Reply to this ]
    Re: Corporation Crushes Working FOSS EMR
    by John Norris on Friday May 26, 2006 @ 04:45 AM
    This might be too simple an understanding but:
    • The new (corporate) folks want printed files.
    • The new (corporate) folks will not allow any non-corporate-standard box on their network.
    I assume you could more-or-less just print what corporate wants from VistA. So it is the networked box that is the bigger deal.

    Would they allow a Linux virtual server running on their corporate-standard-box?

    I am not too familiar with VistA architecture, but could you do things on local PC's, then sneakernet them over to (and back from) a non-networked box once day?

    The sad thing is that it might just be too big of a bother to spend the time trying to work around.

    Perhaps they could have you keep it as a valuable alternative for corporate to have in their back pocket just in case the other doesn't work out. Your implimentation would be a great demonstration of what is possible.

    [ Reply to this ]
    Re: Corporation Crushes Working FOSS EMR
    by Hank on Tuesday June 13, 2006 @ 08:37 AM
    I agree with the virtual machine route. Let them have their windows network. Most Windows admins are fine with VMWare and use it often. Your users should be compensated by the loss in productivity if they have to go back to manual methods. -HH
    [ Reply to this ]
    Re: Corporation Crushes Working FOSS EMR
    by John Helms on Tuesday June 13, 2006 @ 02:18 PM
    I also feel your pain. About a year and a half ago I finally gave up fighting against the tide of stupidity in the community clinic I worked at as a member of the IT staff and gave my notice. During the two and a half years I worked there I did everything in my power to cut costs and save them much needed funds by using Open Source and Linux where ever I could. It didn't much matter since the IT department was run by a person whose main talent was wasting money on idiotic costly pie in the sky projects. When I got there they were using an ancient server for medical scheduling and records that was obviously on its last legs. I moved this system to RedHat where it ran continously for the entire time I worked there. The powers that be decided they MUST have a new EMR system so after wasting a bunch of money on one that was Windows based and an obviously poorly written piece of sh*t they wasted some more money on another one that was also an obvious POS. When I left a year and a half ago they were just implementing this second Windows based system. My guesstimate of costs for this second system are somewhere between a half million dollars and a million. Way too much for a "community" clinic to afford whatever the actual number was. I ran into a friend recently who still works there . She began to tell me that the employees were very upset with their "new" EMR system. I asked why she was calling it "new" since I had been gone for a year and a half and it was just coming on line when I left. "No', she said, "I mean the new one they just got". As unbelievable as it sounds they just did it again. They purchased yet another new WIndows based POS to replace the one they just bought a year and a half ago! So lets add this up

    1. A working medical scheduling billing system that ran perfectly on Linux replaced by

    2. A system that never worked to start with based on Windows replaced by

    3. Another Windows based system that apparently ran for a year and a half replaced by

    4. Yet another Windows based system that the employees hate.

    And all of this in a community clinic with limited funds for patients.

    The mind boggles at the insane stupidity and waste!

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