Yikes — Health care overhaul: $646 billion [to be announced tomorrow]


Health care overhaul: $646 billion

February 25, 2009: 5:12 PM ET
WASHINGTON (CNN) — Two White House officials told CNN Wednesday that the proposed budget to be released Thursday will include a $646 billion health care “reserve fund,” which is intended to help pay to overhaul the nation’s health care system.

One of the officials said the administration sees health care as key to the nation’s fiscal health and called the fund a down payment on President Barack Obama’s effort to reform health care.

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Un-Answered Questions in ARRA of 2009

Here is a series of crucial but un-answered questions in the Health IT provisions of the recent American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009:

  1. If Health IT training is increased on a large scale, what will be the actual, working system that they train on?
  2. How effective can large-scale education and training be when the systems in place in actual practice are very different than training

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A National Open Source Healthcare System for $0.11 an Encounter

In the course of the past year we have been contacted by numerous countries, agencies and states about very large scale implementations of our Advantage and WebVista systems. It got us to thinking about just what the top limit would, turns out there really isn’t one. This executive summary gives a very limited introduction to such a system and we would love to have feedback on it. We are actively working on a much more detailed look at particulars of such a system that touches on privacy implications, additional benefits for federal agencies and public health, and practical aspects of real national interoperability. The technology used to scale a system like this is already widely available and proven on even larger scales, we envision a system here with just under 2 million users, facebook alone has close to 800 million. Using the open source touchstones of pound, linux, apache, mysql, php and memcached (LAMMPP) a system of any size is cost effective. We need to put healthcare spending in perspective or we are never going to be able to resolve the problems plaguing it.

Only one week left to register for FOSS Health 09 at earlybird rates

This is the last week to register for FOSS Health 09 for the early-bird rate! It costs only $60 to register now, but it will change to $250 for later registration. This rate is specifically intended so that individual community members can attend cheaply. This conference will feature the who’s who of Open Source Health software including

  • WorldVistA (EHR)
  • MOSS – Misys Open Source Software
  • OpenMRS (EHR)
  • ClearHealth (EHR)
  • OpenClinica (Clinical Research)
  • Mirth – WebReach (HL7 router!)
  • OpenVistA -Medsphere (EHR)
  • OpenVistA -Medsphere (EHR)

OpenSource LIS – Laboratory Information System

OpenELIS is a robust Enterprise Laboratory Information System built around an extensible and scalable framework. OpenELIS is designed and developed through the collaborative efforts of Public Health Laboratories to accommodate business processes that are common to all public health laboratories; encompassing clinical, environmental, newborn screening, and animal testing.

The goal of the OpenELIS team is to develop a state of the art system that is economically sustainable by reducing both initial investment and ongoing maintenance costs. By using an open source approach, we ensure that the project will continue to evolve and meet the changing needs of the community.

Call For Ban on Federal Money for Proprietary EMR’s.

Please let your federal government representative know the following: “The nation is demanding and spending billions to ensure that we have a high-performance Health Information Technology infrastructure. The ARRA of 2009 allows proprietary companies to put up tollbooths and black boxes everywhere at taxpayer expense with little or no guarantees of the ability of the public to audit, innovate, study, fix or extend the software to ensure high performance, privacy, security, fitness, or upgradeablility can occur. Without a ban on federal money for purchasing proprietary Electronic Medical Record software and requirements for licenses such as the Affero General Public License that safeguard public rights and ensures sustainability, we will become a nation of renters of poorly performing health IT software infrastructure that taxpayers paid dearly for, and will pay for again and again.”

Freemed-YiRC V1.10 Released!

Freemed-YiRC V1.10 has been officially released. The major news is this new release incorporates foster care/adoption/respite functionality, increasing the scope of FMYiRC beyond just Youth in Residential Care. Other major new features include PDF creation capability, as well as a much improved calendaring system (with internal e-mail alert capability). Some great navigation/usability/administration features have been added as well.

In other news, the project is also looking for additional developers for paid work as the project expands, especially in Ohio.


Gaetano Fida Needs Help With Dr. Notes Which is Why The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 Needs a FOSS Amendment

Gaetano Fida wrote in to Linux Medical News here with the following plea: “I need access to Dr. Notes. Admin password doesn’t work and we need access to retrive patient data for court hearing. Help. I am the It support for the practice.” Dr. Notes as you may or may not recall is the company that allegedly started cutting off people for non-payment of Electronic Medical Record ‘rent’ even while the company itself was not paying its own rent. This is exactly, precisely a gaping hole in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 which will give breaks (aka money) to doctor’s for implementing Electronic Medical Record software. It has no provision whatsoever for ensuring that those EMR’s are sustainable, much less Free/Open Source licensed. Without a provision requiring Free/Open Source licensing such as the Affero GPL, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 which will spend at least $19 billion on Health Information Technology, could be the biggest lost opportunity in American history.

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Debian Med released with Debian 5.0 (Lenny)

The recent release of Debian 5.0 (Lenny) contains a lot of medical software which is interesting for several tasks in medical work. The strongest part remains the support of microbiological applications but also medical imaging and the practice management GNUmed are included now.

Perhaps an article on The Register might be interesting as well.
What is new for Debian Med in Lenny?

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