SQL Clinic Reaches 1.0

Thomas Good is announcing the availability of SQL Clinic Version 1.0.0 which is now available at:
http://www.sqlclinic.net ‘…The SQL Clinic application suite provides storage and retrieval of clinical data via an easy to use web interface. Designed primarily for providers of psychiatric housing, it is nonetheless ready for use in all settings, including Community Mental Health Centers (CMHCs) and private practice. It is an Open Source product, licensed under the GNU General Public License and may be freely redistributed. Full press release and feature list follows. Update 2/6/02: They now have support contract link on the main page.

SQL Clinic Version 1.0.0 is now available at


The SQL Clinic application suite provides storage and retrieval of clinical data via an easy to use web interface. Designed primarily for providers of psychiatric housing, it is nonetheless ready for use in all settings, including Community Mental Health Centers (CMHCs) and private practice. It is an Open Source product, licensed under the GNU General Public License and may be freely redistributed. It runs on Linux, the rugged and cost effective networking operating system. It requires the Apache web server, the PostgreSQL database, the Sendmail mail server and Perl 5 – all Open Source products that are available in most modern distributions of Linux (and other Unix implementations as well.)

This is the first non-beta release of the application, which has been used in a production environment at Saint Vincent Catholic Medical Centers for the past 3 years. There are many improvements over earlier releases.

Previous public releases (beta) are also available at www.sqlclinic.net. All releases are supported by mailing lists open to the public. Technical support via email is free and commercial support packages are available at very reasonable prices for sites needing assistance with installation, setup and customizations. Users with an interest in programming are invited to join the development team.

The following features make SQL Clinic a valuable tool:

* Built-in Security and Data Access Clearance Levels
* Easy to use Web Based Database Administration Utilities
* Free Technical Support via Public Mailing Lists
* Full Set of Linux Shell Scripts for Experienced DBAs
* JCAHO Compliance
* Thorough Documentation in the form of a Web Based User Guide

* Complete Set of Clinical and Administrative Applications:

– Master Patient Index – allowing parallel data streams based on
unit names/treatment tracks…separate records in various units
and treatment modalities are all linked by a single patient ID.

– Referral Tracking with auto-email notification of census changes.
Comprehensive intake and placement subsystem keeps administrators
informed of any census changes.

– Medicaid Billable Progress Noting – with alert keyword scanning
Each note is scanned for user defined keywords. Matches trigger
*immediate* email notification via user defined mailing lists.
Audit trails track any modification of progress notes, allowing
repair of errors *and* accountability.

– Treatment Planning – with 220 user tunable, Medicaid reimbursible
skill areas – grouped into eleven Medicaid Restorative Services

– Caseload assignment tracking. Supervisors may view and modify
staff caseloads. Caseload assignments are used to define which
staff receive auto-email notifications when patient physical
examinations are due.

– Medication histories. Utilities for viewing current medications only – or full medication histories.

– Patient demographics. Very comprehensive details about your patients. Family, extended family, other treaters, contacts…Tracking of medical history, developmental history, nutritional needs, spiritual needs. Every facet of the patient that may be relevant to treatment is tracked.

– Full entitlements tracking including Foodstamps, Medicaid, Public Assistance and Social Security benefits.

– Special care monitor for high risk patients. Tracking of substance abuse, gambling abuse, self destructive behavior, legal issues, etc.

– Comprehensive patient assessments with psychosocial summaries, full mental status exams and exhaustive functional assessments. The functional assessment is directly related to the treatment plan. Patients are rated for skill levels in 220 different areas and recorded deficits may be used for treatment plan generation.

– Embedded DSM IV validation table for consistency in clinical records. Patient diagnoses may be entered manually or pulled directly from the embedded DSM IV. Additionally, A DSM IV reference tool is included.

– Numerous Quality Assurance instruments: tx goal attainment tracking, electronic customer satisfaction survey, formal supervision logs, incident tracking, auto-email reminders (patient physicals due, lease expiration, etc.), staff credential tracking, staff training and development logs, chart review tools for administrators, etc.

– Patient Safety utilities for tracking room inspections, fire drills, safety checklists and disaster drills.

– Online policy and procedure manual. A centralized database of all of your policies is easily created and maintained. Accessible from any workstation. Very handy during audits by regulatory bodies.

– Online forms for consistency in administrative records. Easy user generation of new forms via web based utility.

– Human Resource module with online tracking of employee performance evaluation due dates (with auto-email notification.)

– Auto-emailed daily reports: occupancy and patient movement reports, homelessness reports, discharge tracking.

– Staff communication utilities: unit (shift) log with keyword scanning, team notes for clinical rounds/team meeting, community meeting logs, therapeutic group notes, etc.

– Online Work Order subsystem with auto-email notification of order entry and job completion.

– Purchase Order subsystem with an optional SQL Ledger general accounting application. (SL as a module that simply plugs into the /ledger directory of the SQL Clinic source tree.)

– Full Respite Care module. Programs that deal with the frequent role reversals of participants (identified SPMI patient, respite “customer” and respite “companion”.)

– Archival utilities for progress notes and treatment plans. Build a read only data warehouse for your records.

– Personal reminder system and address book. Enter a personal reminder and receive daily email notices for 7 days prior to the event. Record all of your contacts in personal addressbook accessible to only its owner. (Included in the /reminder directory is a shell script that uses the linux pilot-link program to load addressbook data into a palm pilot. The src for pilot-link can be found in each SQL Clinic download, in the /pub directory.)

– Many more!

Feedback is most welcome and we hope you enjoy your SQL Clinic experience!

Thomas Good and Ingo Assenmacher, Project Leaders.
For additional information: info@sqlclinic.net

Beginning Perl for Bioinformatics

O’Reilly has a new book entitled ‘Beginning Perl for Bioinformatics’: ‘This book shows biologists with little or no programming experience how to use Perl, the ideal language for biological data analysis. Each chapter focuses on solving a particular problem or class of problems, so you’ll finish the book with a solid understanding of Perl basics, a collection of programs for such tasks as parsing BLAST and GenBank, and the skills to tackle more advanced bioinformatics programming.
Full description here.

NYTimes: HDTV for Endoscopy

The NY Times (free registration required) is reporting on the efforts of Dr. Steven F. Palter to get manufacturers of endoscopy equipment to use HDTV: ‘… Dr. Palter said that HDTV endoscopic images “could be the difference between wearing dirty glasses or clean ones,” possibly helping doctors perceive the beginning stages of diseases that might otherwise pass unnoticed. They could also help reduce the stress of performing what for doctors can be an exacting, intense procedure…’

Developer Release of ResMedicinae

ResMedicinae is an open source practice management system that ‘…combines intuitive ease of use with the advantages of the Java platform. It uses latest technology adhering to common standards for medical software and will such be open to many other medical systems… Release notes within.

  • Refactored project; it is now based on the HMVC architectural pattern.
  • Dynamic GUI switching at runtime (Frame/InternalFrame/TabPage modes).
  • First gui prototype of “Record” module (Electronic Health Record).
  • See details at: http://www.resmedicinae.org

All Digital Hospital Costs Just $15 Million

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel has an article touting an all-digital hospital which is being built at the Indiana Heart Hospital in Indianapolis. GE Medical Systems will be responsible for the technology. The cost: just $15 million dollars. “We are so totally committed to a paperless, filmless and wireless environment, that we won’t even have nursing stations,” said David Veillette, CEO of the Indiana Heart Hospital. “Instead, all of our caregivers will be able to input and retrieve information right at the patient’s bedside.” I wish them well, but the above is difficult to read with a straight face.

In-car passenger heat-stroke warning system on Linux

Linuxdevices.com is reporting on: ‘The EarthLink Simple Plug-and-Play Automotive Research Kit (SPARK) is a turn-key development system, based on Linux and open’ standards. It’s designed to let developers easily test, evaluate and develop automotive applications using familiar technologies. Our application uses the EarthLink SPARK kit as the basis for a heatstroke detection and warning system.

We connect a motion sensor and a temperature sensor to the SPARK in-vehicle device inputs and produce a software application designed to monitor the sensors and take action if the vehicle becomes hot enough to put the occupants at risk.

Developing applications for the SPARK in-vehicle �Clinux platform is similar to developing applications for desktop Linux systems. The kernel and libraries of the in-vehicle device are a subset of the typical full Linux system. The overall process is similar, using familiar tools like GNU make and the GNU compiler.”

Full story here.

Zope and Python for case management software

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.

Announce: Debian-Med Project

I’m proud to announce the official start of
the Debian-Med project. For detailed info just visit the unofficial project page. Probably the official address where these pages will be moved to will be http://www.debian.org/devel/debian-med/ but this page is not available yet. Read on for how to subscribe to the project mailing list.

To subscribe to the mailing list, please send mail to


with the word `subscribe’ as Subject.
Please remember the -REQUEST part of the address.

Kind regards