i2b2 (http://www.i2b2.org) recently launched open source project focused on providing research IT tools for building deidentified research data repositories. UMass Medical School is adopting the technolgy but learned that there were many non-software issues like a data governance strategy that needed to be addressed in order to meet compliance and organizational needs. Ralph Zottola is presenting in a webinar to describe the planning and open source tool selection process.
Seven Open Source projects were featured at a workshop on Open Source software at the annual AMIA Symposium in Chicago, Illinois. Despite the Saturday evening time slot, about 60 conference attendees were treated to some inspiring presentations. Senthil Nachimuthu, M.D., organized the two and a half hour workshop. This year’s AMIA Symposium on Biomedical and Health Informatics features 14 Workshops, 26 full or half day Tutorials, 96 Scientific Sessions, and over 300 poster presentations. The Symposium runs from November 10 to 14.
From the hardhats list on Google Groups: “I have been watching some of the steps VA has taken over this past year with regards to management of health IT systems that I would consider to be major strategic missteps. The following are some informal observations.”
The VA’s superb record in turning around its health system to become one of the best in the world in quality and cost management has not escaped attention. The fact that the VistA software, training and documentation is freely available as public domain is making the DNA of this transformation available to health systems everywhere. The Cerner press release announcing the VA’s intention to integrate a proprietary laboratory component into the public domain VistA software ecosystem has the potential if carried out to severely hamper the strategic leveraging of the VA transformation across the US and the rest of the world.
A stark future awaits American health care if the Veterans Affairs (VA) system and Cerner is allowed to go forward with announced plans to replace the VA’s successful public domain laboratory software, in need of update, with a proprietary one. The VA would give large amounts of cash that would greatly assist a single proprietary company in dominating EHR software in both the public and private sector. A free, thriving EHR ecosystem will be destroyed and replaced with a monopoly or cartel at great expense in which the quality, privacy and security of such software is a trade secret, un-examined and un-examinable. If this is allowed, it could lead to Americans essentially renting their own medical data back from the Cerners of the world at great expense.
Under the direction of management and technology consulting firm BearingPoint, Inc. (NYSE: BE), The National Alliance for Health Information Technology (Alliance) is working with the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) to engage health care stakeholders in a participatory process to define key health IT terms.
Registration for SCALE 6X, the 2008 Southern California Linux Expo, opened on Monday night. The community run linux and open-source conference will hold its 6th annual event on Feb 8 – 10, 2008 in Los Angeles, CA. In addition to registration, the first set of speakers and exhibitors was announced. Exhibits will include demos from groups such as IBM, Novell, Plain Black, Debian, FreeBSD, OpenBSD, Gentoo, and others. Those interested in speaking still have time to submit an abstract to the call for papers which will close on November 30th. With a strong speaker and exhibitor line up as well as an expanded selection of mini-conferences, SCALE 6X should be the best year yet!
In an unprecedented announcement, the VA has signed a 9 year deal with Cerner to replace laboratory information system at 150 hospitals and 800 clinics.
This is both a highly concerning but also highly provocative announcement given its implications. Which side of the sword you will feel as a result depends on your perspective.
This is just a reminder that the second annual Demonstrating Open Source
Healthcare Solutions conference (DOHCS) is taking place at SCALE 2008
again in Los Angeles, February 8th. Pre-registration for attendees is
now available so please help us publicize the event, https://www.socallinuxexpo.org/reg6/. We would love to
have a talk proposal submitted by a wide variety of contributors on a diverse set of topics. Note that this year we are
offering both a technical and a business oriented tract.