Feature Articles

North Carolina's Central Regional Hospital Rolls Out VistA For Less Than $1 Million

Central Regional Hospital, a state psychiatric and medical facility located in Butner, North Carolina, has just completed a full-scale implementation of the open source VistA electronic health record (EHR) system. The hospital, after three years of work, was able to self-implement and customize the fully-featured EHR at a cost of less than $1 million. The 398-bed hospital serves the acute and long-term inpatient mental health and medical needs of North Carolina citizens from 26 counties and employs more than 1,900 staff, including 50 doctors, 300 professional nurses, 700 nursing assistants, 40 psychologists, and 70 social workers. Central Regional Hospital is a major teaching site for 23 psychiatric residents per year from Duke University and the University of North Carolina medical schools.  It also provides training for medical students from both schools as well as psychiatry subspecialty fellowship training. Read More »

VistA: From Start To Go In 5 Minutes

[The] original two to three day process of trying to take home VistA EMR from yester year is now something that can be completed in the time it takes for you to walk to the nearby coffee shop for a refill and return to your office. Thanks to the extraordinary engineering work of Chris Edwards (a developer for KRM Associates and Certification Manager at OSEHRA), all of the "tough decisions" are made for you. Read More »

VistA: The Open Source EHR Hackable Platform

[A]s a result of the work of Christopher Edwards, developing the OSEHRA Installer for VistA, which includes the suite of EWD.js products and a raft of demonstration applications, we now have exactly what Tony was suggesting: VistA, the Open Source EHR Hackable Platform. Read More »

EWD.js and VistA: Now With No Barriers to Entry

Over the past few weeks I’ve been busy.  Before explaining what I’ve been busy doing, I’ll start by stating my sincere thanks to Christopher Edwards (KRM Associates and Certification Manager at OSEHRA) for enhancing and extending his installer for VistA to include an option to automatically install, configure and fire up EWD.js. Read More »

A Review Of The Printrbot 3D Printer

If you're looking around for 3D printers that are both inexpensive and open source friendly, the Printrbot Simple Kit will probably catch your attention. Read More »

Court Prods FCC In Unexpected Direction In This Week’s Verizon Ruling

A court ruling this past Tuesday on FCC “network neutrality” regulation closes and opens a few paths in a three-way chess game that has been going on for years between the US District Court of Appeals, the FCC, and the major Internet server providers. [...] Read More »

The GovLab Index - 2014

GovLab has just released “The GovLab Index: The Networked Public — January 2014”. The GovLab Index provides a concise highlight of global trends in internet use, social media, and mobile networking.  It presents some interesting findings and might be of interest to many working in the healthcare industry. Read More »

Happy Public Domain Day

Copyright is a time-limited, Government-awarded monopoly, given to individuals as an incentive for the creation of works of art, and their eventual dedication to the Public Domain. [...] Read More »

Precision Medicine, Genomics & 'Open Health'

Traditional medicine, integrative medicine, preventive medicine, predictive medicine, regenerative medicine – and now we have 'precision medicine'.

The purpose of this article is to provide a brief introduction and high level overview of 'Precision Medicine' to health information technology (IT) managers and analysts, along with pointers to key resources or sources of information they might want to explore if they decide to delve deeper into the topic. Read More »

The Role Of Big Data In Personalizing The Healthcare Experience: Mobile

Cheaper, faster, better technology is enabling nearly one in four people around the world to connect with each other anytime, anywhere, as online social networks have changed the way we live, work and play. In healthcare, the data generated by mobile phones and sensors can give us new information about ourselves, extend the reach of our healers and help to accelerate a societal shift towards greater personal engagement in healthcare. Read More »

Human Augmentation, Exoskeleton Technology & 'Open' Health

Human augmentation is generally used to refer to technologies that enhance human productivity or capability. It spans a wide gamut of technologies, ranging from implants, prosthetic limbs, enhanced sensory devices, powered exoskeletons, and more. Military organizations are now experimenting with a wide range of 1st generation human augmentation technologies, including exoskeletons that allow personnel to carry increased loads and perform at a higher level. These devices also have the potential to be adapted for use in healthcare and many other industries. Read More »

'Internet of Things (IoT)' morphing into the 'Internet of Everything (IoE)'

The numbers are staggering.  Gartner predicts that the total economic value add for the Internet of Things (IoT)will be $1.9 trillion dollars in 2020, spread across all industries – especially in healthcare. McKinsey Global Institute pegs the potential economic impact at $2.7 trillion to $6.2 trillion by 2025. IDC put the Internet of things technology and services spending at $4.8 trillion in 2012 and expects the market to be $8.9 trillion in 2020.  Cisco Systems has published a white paper entitled "Embracing the Internet of Everything To Capture Your Share of $14.4 Trillion". Key to this rapidly evolving market are open standards and open source technology. Read More »

OpenHatch Brings Open Source to College Campuses

A little less than a year ago, I was asked to direct OpenHatch‘s Open Source Comes to Campus event series. Open Source Comes to Campus is a workshop designed to introduce college students to open source, to teach them how to use tools like version control and issue trackers, and to guide them through making their first contributions. When I joined, OpenHatch was averaging two events a year. I was asked, hopefully, if I could run seven events in 2013.

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Masters In Counseling: Free Social Networking & Information Web Sites

Masters In Counseling.Org is a free informational web site for those who are interested in enrolling in an online degree program to obtain a Master of Counseling degree. The site now contains a list of pages on Google+, just compiled by Laura Harris, that link to social networking sites with information and resources aimed specifically at the mental health and counseling communities. Read More »

Health IT Buzz: Progress on Adoption of Electronic Health Records

Latest Health IT Buzz on Health Information Technology (HIT) from the Office of the National Coordinator (ONC) - Since the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act [ARRA] – which included the creation of the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs – was signed into law, the nation has seen unprecedented growth in the adoption and meaningful use of electronic health records (EHRs). Between 2009 and 2012, EHR adoption nearly doubled among physicians and more than tripled among hospitals. Read More »