Two deep dives into open source EHR

Two deep dives into open source EHR

Summary: If you're interested in implementing a powerful EHR environment but don't want to pay commercial prices, this article contains some great resources.

TOPICS: Open Source, Health

As meaningful use and the various components of the Affordable Care Act begin to activate, medical professionals and facilities are beginning to face the same proprietary vs. open source choice that many other IT operations have faced over the years.

As you all know, there are benefits and disadvantages to each.

Proprietary systems are often accompanied by considerable support and hand-holding from their vendors and are often "product managed" so all the various elements fit together smoothly. But they can often be expensive and may result in lock-in.

Open source systems don't suffer from lock-in and are often free, but they often don't come with support, documentation, or a coherent product strategy. While open source products often work as well as (and sometimes better than) proprietary systems, they tend to be more quirky and require more hands-on time and expertise.

But, for some practices and facilities, particularly those who are nonprofit or public service facilities on a budget, commercial EHR systems may simply be way out of reach financially.

As it turns out, open source EHR is on the rise. What follow are two videos from Health Resources and Services Administration of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. They're long, in-depth, and quite fascinating. If you're interested in implementing a powerful EHR environment but don't want to pay commercial prices, these are must-watch videos.

Topics: Open Source, Health


Denise Amrich is a Registered Nurse, the health care advisor for the U.S. Strategic Perspective Institute, and a mentor for the Virtual Campus at Florida's Brevard Community College.

Nothing in this article is meant to be a substitute for medical advice, and shouldn't be considered as such. If you are in need of medical help, please see your doctor.

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  • Disappointed.... Each/every time

    ZD Net, stop wasting my time! Every article from Denise is not even informational or news. If you search google, you will find more information this.
  • ignorant and uninformed article

    Article Writer Denise Amrich is obviously very uninformed, albeit ignorant about most of the better quality "Open Source" Electronic Health Records Management software available today, since most if not all of these great products can be obtained with professional services and support programs equal to any in the proprietary marketplace.

    I challenge her to cite lesser quality support for OpenERM, VXMedical or FreeMED, as only a few examples of competitive medical software when compared to e.g. ADP Medical software services. Besides which many of these Free/Open Source Software (FOSS) vertical applications and services are offered via Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) or Cloud Computing, thus removing a significant portion of the onsite service, training and support from older model of technology services.

    Cannot ZDNet find more competent and knowledgeable article writers.