OpenEvidence: EU finances an Open Source project

The EU is very active in supporting Open Source
development by providing financial aids to European
projects of interest, like OpenEvidence that
was approved to be realized by a consortium of technology providers and users from 4 countries: Belgium, France, Italy and Estonia.

In this contest C&A is very proud to announce its OpenEvidence participation, integrating its Time Stamping technology, to this ‘evidence creation and validation system’ of electronic documents and activities.

The technology developed by the project can be used as basic building blocks to support such services as non-repudiation of electronic business transactions, property right protection and notarisation.

Implementations and demonstration services using the protocols defined in RFC 3029 (DVCS) and RFC 3161 (TSP) will be provided as initial activity.
A version of time stamping service can be also be tested on the C&A web site.

To learn more about OpenEvidence:

Sun’s open desktop client as hospital terminals?

Many applications used to access medical
records and lab results are now web based.
This removes the need to have expensive, less-reliable and less-secure
MS clients to access information. An open source, low
cost, reliable client that is backed by a big
player is may be whats required.
Can the new Sun Open desktop fit the bill?
This article states: “Combining world-class Java Card authentication with an open source desktop software stack and off-the-shelf hardware, we can deliver military-grade security with profound savings in acquisition and operational costs…”

“The new solution brings together off-the-shelf hardware, open-source software and Sun’s own industry-leading intellectual property. These include low-cost desktop systems hardware and several open source software efforts, namely Linux, Mozilla, OpenOffice, Evolution and GNOME.”

“The total system solution is expected to be available in 2003 with prototype systems available soon at Sun’s worldwide iForce centers. “We want customers, ISVs, OEMs and channel partners to have the conversation with us about how much they can save and facilitate their migration to this much needed alternative environment,” said Schwartz.” Simulators Getting Real

The DFW Star-Telegram is reporting on how medical simulators are getting better: ‘…”If you can train health care workers in a realistic situation where they can make mistakes, nobody dies, and they learn the lesson, that will have tremendous implications for medical education and medical care,” says Dr. Donald Baim, an interventional cardiologist and director of the Center for Integration of Medicine and Innovative Technology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital…’

HealthLeaders: The Role of Medical Librarians in Reducing Medical Errors

Health Leaders has an article about an under-utilized resource that is likely to become more important in the near future: ‘…nearly every healthcare organization already has an expert on staff who possesses the skills needed for this shift toward knowledge- and evidence-based medicine. The core training and mission of a medical librarian is to make sure that decision-makers (scientists, physicians, health consumers, administrators) have accurate and timely information, where and when they need it, and in the format they find most useful.

Nominationees for the 2002 GNU/Linux Medical News Achievement Award

The nominees for the 2002 GNU/Linux Medical News
Software Achievement Award in alphabetic order
are as follows:

  • Thomas Beale, openEHR Foundation
  • Brian Bray, Minoru Development Corp.
  • K.S. Bhaskar, Sanchez Computer Associates.
  • Dr. Daniel L. Johnson, Mayo Clinic.
  • Wayne Rasband, Research Services Branch, National Institute of Mental Health.

    A very distinguished group. The full text
    of each nomination is within. This award will be
    presented at the November 2002

    Thomas Beale

    I hereby nominate Thomas Beale of the openEHR Foundation to receive
    the 2002 LMN Achievement Award.

    Over a period of many years Thomas has been steadfast in his pursuit
    of the “future-proof” medical record application.
    Thomas’ keen ability to always listen and always learn from others,
    yet stay focused and not stray from his mission has this year
    produced the openEHR Reference Model.

    While this work in itself is significant, Thomas has also been very
    busy working with other standards bodies to educate himself and them
    on the differences and similarities among standards. His world
    travels, quiet leadership and proof through publication puts Thomas
    in the front of the queue in qualifying for this honor.

    K.S. Bhaskar

    I want to nominate K.S. Bhaskar of Sanchez Computer Associates, who was directly responsible for convincing Sanchez to open
    source G.TM MUMPS which in turn led to the porting of VistA to the full open source stack on Linux and the creation of WorldVistA. This in my
    opinion is the most significant thing anyone in open source in health
    care has done since we got the ball rolling 5 years ago.

    Brian Bray

    I hereby nominate Brian Bray of Minoru Development to receive the
    2002 LMN Achievement Award.

    Brian’s initial contact with a selected group of open source
    advocates and subsequent hosting of the Toronto Summit was the spark
    that ignited collaboration which eventually gave birth to OSHCA.

    His leadership at Minoru helped to secure funding from the European
    Union for on going open source research projects such as PICNIC.

    Daniel L. Johnson, MD

    I nominate Dr. Daniel L. Johnson for the Second Annual Linux Medical
    News Award. His steadfast commitment to Open Source in healthcare has been a
    shining example of perseverance. His accomplishments include participating at some level in a great
    percentage (if not all) of the OS healthcare projects. He has
    presented open source at AMIA (in fact was the first to do so). He
    has presented open source concepts to major medical institutions.
    His quiet and humble demeanor belies his knowledge and leadership
    by example.

    Wayne Rasband

    I would like to propose a name for the 2002 Linux Medical News Achievement Award, which is more related to free software than strictly on Linux.
    My proposal is for Wayne Rasband (, Research Services Branch, National Institute of Mental Health, Bethesda, Maryland, USA, as author of ImageJ (
    ImageJ is a medical image processing software developed
    and put in the public domain (old-style definition, but
    definitely valid) with source code included by Wayne Rasband.
    The software is inspired by a previously created and carefully
    maintained software named NIH-Image, which was
    available for Macintosh and ported to Windows by
    a third-party.

    What I can personally add is that the software
    is feature full and at a really professional level
    making it compete with commercially available
    software (in the $5000-$10000 range)…
    In addition to the software,, Wayne
    Rasband is taking care of the user community
    through mailing lists and hosting.

  • LMN Newsletter Vol. 3, Issue 1

    The latest Linux Medical Newsletter is out here. You can subscribe to it here. Excerpt: ‘…corporate politics set in and the project began stalling precisely when it was becoming quite viable for the real world. For closed-source software, this would have been deadly. The software would likely have been locked up in the crumbling corporation indefinitely. Its former customers would have been left with several choices of what to do with abandoned medical record software, all of them bad. Contrast this with software covered by a free/open source license…’

    Open Letter to UK’s NHS IT Director

    Responding to this article at, Tim Cook has written an open letter to the newly named Director of the United Kingdom’s National Health Service: ‘…Considering your lack of direct exposure to healthcare information systems I assume you will be choosing an experienced team to advise you? Maybe some people from the BCS HIC and of course the people on the PRIMIS project have first hand knowledge of the problems with interfacing healthcare systems and data export/import. I also trust that you have an open mind about open source software as well. Cliches such as “no one has ever been fired for buying Microsoft” may not be true for much longer…

    Dear Mr. Granger,

    I read with great interest of your appointment as the Director General of NHS IT. For several years I have looked to the UK NHS as the world leader in healthcare IT deployments. The NHS has been a great source of information and inspiration for those of us who desire to learn from history.

    Certainly your experience in working with divergent systems will be invaluable in establishing national standards and bringing together the various systems. There is a great need to be able to not only share information between systems. The ability to do something as simple as move a patient record from GP to another, while maintaining the context integrity of the record would be wonderful.

    Considering your lack of direct exposure to healthcare information systems I assume you will be choosing an experienced team to advise you? Maybe some people from the BCS HIC and of course the people on the PRIMIS project have first hand knowledge of the problems with interfacing healthcare systems and data export/import.

    I also trust that you have an open mind about open source software as well. Cliches such as “no one has ever been fired for buying Microsoft” may not be true for much longer. While many endusers and especially those that are active in the open source healthcare community have known of these security weaknesses. knowingly using software that exposes private patient data to disclosure has to be a violation of the RFA. Isn’t it?

    In the hustle and bustle of changing jobs you may have missed this statement by Microsoft Senior VP Windows Development; “I’m not proud,” he told delegates yesterday (5 September). “We really haven’t done everything we could to protect our customers. Our products just aren’t engineered for security,” admitted Valentine, who since 1998 has headed Microsoft’s Windows division. (see Computer Weekly article).

    Again, congratulations on your appointment. I am certain I speak for a large portion of the healthcare IT community in saying that we are very interested in hearing about the direction you intend to take.

    Also note that the Open Source Healthcare Alliance annual meeting is November 14 – 16 at UCLA in Los Angles CA, USA. We would be honored to have you present your vision of NHS IT at this event.


    Tim Cook
    Open Paradigms

    Microsoft Products Are Not Engineered for Security!

    What many in the open source community have been espousing for years, a Microsoft VP admits in public. The pressure finally squeezed the truth out of at least one Microsoft executive according to this article in Computer Weekly as well as here.
    When will we finally see a more proactive movement within the US Government to stop using MS products in mission critical situations? You tax dollars deserve better treatment.