Representative ‘Pete’ Stark recently put forth H.R. 6898 in which federal government coordination of open source and Veterans Affairs VistA software through the Office of the National Coordinator of Health Information Technology (ONCHIT) can occur. Despite the recent formation of an Open Source working group within HIMSS, the proprietary vendor dominated Health Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) is now officially opposed to the open source and VistA aspects of the bill saying that the Federal Government has no role in this. HIMSS is now officially in favor of more patient deaths by medical errors, further slow adoption of electronic medical records, protection for ‘black box’ medicine, continued high expense of health information technology and continued poor care in the United States. Continue reading
Health Information and Management Systems Society HIMSS has presented their response to H.R. 6898 which favors open source software and Veterans Affairs VistA: ‘…The private sector makes significant investments in research and development for healthcare IT products. Healthcare IT is available via a competitive market in which vendors compete on the basis of price, quality, and functionality of a product. The development, routine updating, and provision of an open source “healthcare information system” is not the role of the federal government and such product development should remain in the private sector…’
Akaza Research announces the availability of version 2.5 of OpenClinica, the popular open source clinical trials software. Full press release after the break.
(Cambridge, MA) September 29, 2008: Akaza Research announces the availability of OpenClinica 2.5, the popular open source clinical trials software. This release marks a major milestone for users of OpenClinica by adding a host of features, many of which are designed to better support regulated industry sponsored clinical trials.
It is becoming more and more clear to me that decision makers in healthcare policy and especially in healthcare IT policy do not understand the real underlying problems of interoperability in healthcare applications.
Dare I also say that most developers don’t either?
There are a few remaining spots available in the upcoming OpenClinica training course, October 15-17. This is a great, cost effective way to become an expert in learning how to use OpenClinica. Registration is on a first come, first serve basis. For more information about the
course and a registration form, see:
This will be our first training on OpenClinica 2.5. These spots will likely go quickly, so hurry up and register today!
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Deborah Bryant
GOSCON Director firstname.lastname@example.org 971-533-8050
GOSCON 2008 Showcases Open Public Health IT
Groundbreaking event highlights real-world business cases and applications
for open source in government
Portland, Ore. � September 18, 2008 � Deborah Bryant, GOSCON Director,
announced today that the Government Open Source Conference (GOSCON) 2008
conference will feature an Open Public Health IT track to explore both a
strategic direction for open source software in the public health sector as
well as real-world applications that are in use today by agencies around the
In another smart move by the “new medsphere”, medsphere.org has been retooled as a community forge. They are in soft-launch now, and will make a formal announcement soon. The new site is far more community-friendly than the old one. Its a critical part of the Medsphere strategy to get the VistA community to migrate from Hardhats (and the FOIA VistA/WorldVistA that is typically discussed there) to medsphere.org and (which centers on OpenVistA). Recent licensing changes, as well as this newly improved site are smart moves to that end. The new site is already filling with good content, including a comparison between FOIA CPRS and Medsphere CIS.
The Health e-IT Act of 2008 has many interesting proposals. Of note, is the charge to ONC to create an Open Source EMR to be completed 9 months from the completion of requirements(page 18)PDF text of bill here.
On page 41 the act calls for NIST to create a standard and certification process for EMRs.
By my stopwatch, it’s been around 11 years since it was obvious that an Open Source EMR to rule them all was the way to go. Nice to see the goverment actually catch on.
Healthcare’s leading Open Source companies are partnering to present the Third Annual Demonstrating Open-Source Healthcare Solutions (DOHCS) conference on February 20, 2009, at the Los Angeles Westin LAX. Through the combined efforts of ClearHealth, Medsphere (OpenVista), Akaza Research (OpenClinica) and WebReach (Mirth), DOHCS will complement the Southern California Linux Exposition (SCALE) held at the same location on February 21 and 22.
Congressman Pete Stark (D-Calif) has introduced H.R. 6898 full text of the bill here
which takes a strong stance on Open Source and VistA, calling specifically for an Open Source health information network if possible based upon existing systems such as Veterans Affairs VistA.