Using Open Source tools to build applications for health care seems to be one way of reducing administrative costs in health care and make more
dollars available for benefits. We are building a
suite of work flow software for case management using Zope and Python on Linux. This software is suitable for small to medium sized case management organizations and UM/UR companies who do not have large IT budgets.
CMF (Content Management Framework ) provides a natural basis for designing work flow systems
for case management. We have used CMF and Python
Products within Zope to model the user roles and their functions within a case management environment. Zope contains ready made functionality that can be easily “plugged in” for rapid prototyping and development of complex systems.
The main idea is to integrate all
the players on the web so that all information is captured and made available at one point. The system also has document management funtions to store and serve medical documents. Fax and email are integrated for facilitating communication between users for seamless electronic flow of cases across the entrie process. The goal is to eliminate “Green Folders” and enhance the mangability and control of the cost containment process.
Zope and Python are easy to use and provide the benefits of OOD for modeling the process flow and interactions. All entities are modeled as objects and are persisted to an RDBMS. RDBMS becomes a sine qua non for reporting using SQL based reporting tools. Folders are containers that possess the funtionality required by system roles. Inheritance and Acquisition within the Zope/Python environment allow for grouping related functions as DTML based documents. Specializations required per system role are overidden in the folders. For authentication the Login Manager product within Zope permits easy integration with a user database and helps enforce roles and access permissions.