Quicken and United Healthcare

Quicken and United Healthcare are working together on healthcare applications for consumers. (Article -Los Angeles Business via BizJournals.)

This follows Quicken’s similar efforts in 2004 and 2005 as reported here at LinuxMedNews.

One wonders if there should be a similar open source approach for consumers. Perhaps it would be an offshoot of one of the current open source clinical packages.

MirrorMed Highlights FOSS in Action

Successful health IT software is difficult to create from scratch. Over 70% of Health IT software projects are either outright failures, or “challenged”. The MirrorMed project shows how Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) in medicine can create a successful electronic medical record/electronic health record(EMR/EHR) by using code from several projects: OpenEMR, FreeMed, Uversa’s ClearHealth and the FreeB medical billing project. Together, these projects have threaded the needle and become the few that survive the real world in Health IT.

Using the easy to install xammp (apache, MySQL, PHP) product with PHP 4 makes MirrorMed relatively simple to install on Linux, and somewhat more difficult to install on Windows (not officially supported). (update: 4/16/06, I’ve found that using WinZip to un-pack mirrormed causes a problem. Un-packing with powerArchiver works, other unzip packages have not been tested.)

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PR: Hui Announces VistA Training Institute

“In 2005, the Hui partnered with the University of Hawaii and VistA subject matter experts throughout the continental U.S. to develop a VistA training and certification curricula for clinical application coordinators and system administrators.

�The VistA Institute curricula will serve as a resource to enhance the technical and clinical training competency needed to implement, support and encourage adoption of VistA in the healthcare market worldwide,� explained Hui Director Stanley M. Saiki, Jr., M.D…” Read on for the complete announcement and link.


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PR: Hui Releases Major Upgrade to Hui OpenVistA�

“The Pacific Telehealth & Technology Hui (�Hui�) announced the release of Hui OpenVista� Version 4.0, the first major release upgrade of the non-proprietary, open-source healthcare information system since its initial launch in June 2003…The most notable enhancement to Hui OpenVista 4.0 is a more streamlined installation process. Version 4.0 provides a preconfigured baseline system that simplifies the steps needed to convert the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) version of VistA to Hui OpenVista. This enables users to quickly download the baseline as a starting point for configuring the system to their specific requirements…” Read on for the complete announcement and link.


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BW: Dell Takes Healthcare Online

As first seen on Slashdot, Business Week has an article on Dell computer offering an electronic health record (EHR) to its employees: “Dell will announce Apr. 10 that it is becoming the largest U.S. employer to offer workers electronic health records that track their insurance claims and drug prescriptions, which the computer giant says is a key step toward letting its 26,000 staffers coordinate their own care in a bid to improve medical safety and contain costs…” The article is sketchy on technical details of the system, how it works and if there are third party companies involved.

AMIA Open Source EMR Review Statistics

The AMIA Open Source EMR Review has developed a new method for studying version control systems. This is in order to make some objective statements about the development process from the three FOSS electronic medical record (EMR) projects being studied. Some of the interesting statistical results of developer activity for these 3 projects are:



Pablo Sau writes:

The aim of this new CDMEDIC Live CD is to make a free distribution for complex medical data such as PET-CT, with the possibility of creating, reviewing, manipulating and distributing medical images and reports accessible from any operating system.
New fusion-2.iso has the following features:

  • Live CD created with Linux Live Scripts, based on Debian Sid and uses UnionFS.

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Health Information Exchange Framework to be Unveiled

The Markle foundation has released the following: “Health and Technology Leaders to Unveil Common Framework for Achieving Private, Secure Health Information Exchange

National health care experts and leaders in health information technology from three U.S. communities will make the first public presentation of the Connecting for Health Common Framework – an approach for linking together the many existing and developing electronic health information systems, so that patients’ information can be made available in a private and secure manner, when and where it is needed.” Complete press release enclosed.

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