The American Medical Informatics Association (AMIA) Open Source Working Group has released its Free and Open Source White Paper with press release here: “…Even the most skeptical interpretation of the numbers presented on Free and Open Source deployments and patients shows that these systems are being used in sizable numbers,” said Ignacio Valdes, MD, MSc the primary author of the paper and chair of the AMIA Open Source Working Group. He continues, “This paper is for practitioners, CIO’s, IT staff, and policymakers making difficult health IT decisions with valid concerns about cost, ethics, interoperability, patient privacy, security and the future of their organizations in the hands of proprietary software. This white paper should be a must-read for every organization that uses or is contemplating the use of Electronic Medical Records.” Complete text of the press release after the break.
Julia Weatherby wrote this wrap-up of the recent AMIA 2005 Fall conference. ‘…the conference was definitely not lacking for compelling sessions, especially those on planning for and managing disasters with health IT, and lessons learned implementing Computerized Provider Order Entry (CPOE). I caught a great demonstration of the VistA open source EHR stack and was impressed by the sophistication of the software, which appeared to do a good job of integrating patient data with medical images and lab reports. The graphical interface seemed to be user friendly and easy to navigate. I would like to learn more about its technology and the open source community supporting it…’
One of the most noteworthy presentations was a demonstration of an ASP version of VistA by Sequence Managers President Brian Lord. There was a great deal of interest in the software judging by the audience response.
The American Medical Informatics Association (AMIA) Fall conference will be held October 22nd-26th in Washington D.C. Hilton Towers. This is the most complete information that is available so far for the goings-on, exact meeting rooms to be announced: The Open Source Working Group Business meeting will be held in the Hilton Washington – State, Terrace Level 10/24/2005 5:30 PM – 7:00 PM. An informal, un-official meeting of the minds will be held at a local watering hole after the business meeting, location to be announced at or after the meeting. There will be at least 9 presentations that have a keyword ‘open source’. These will include two presentations on VistA: A demonstration by Brian Lord entitled ‘A Practical Demonstration of VistA on the Open Source Software stack’ at the Hilton Washington – Georgetown, Concourse Level 10/24/2005 1:45 PM – 3:15 PM as well as a panel discussion entitled ‘Deployment of the VistA Free and Open Source EHR/EMR Software Stack’ which will feature myself Bhaskar, Brian Lord and Dave Whitten to be held in the Hilton Washington – International Ballroom East, Concourse Level 10/25/2005 10:30 AM – 12:00 PM. This years Linux Medical News Freedom Award will be given in a brief ceremony after the panel discussion. Note that the Linux Medical News Freedom Award is NOT an officially sponsored award of AMIA, but should be.
The American Medical Informatics Association (AMIA) has announced five task forces, among them an ‘exploratory initiative’ for Open Source: ‘Open Source is currently an important topic throughout the computer software community and has implications for health care information systems. The purpose of this initiative is to explore the feasibility for AMIA to assume a leadership role in promoting and coordinating Open Source activities in the interests of health care system development. This exploratory effort will inventory the level of interest in Open Source initiatives among the health care information systems vendor community; will consider how those activities might interface with the broader Open Source community; and will assess needs and determine the feasibility of AMIA developing an organizational program designed to promote and coordinate Open Source activities in health care. The exploratory initiative will be conducted under the supervision of Dr. Hammond and Mr. Reynolds.’