The 2015 Open Source Electronic Health Record Alliance (OSEHRA) Summit recently held in Bethesda Maryland, announced a new community-based open source product based upon VistA is now available. The development of the new product called “OSEHRA VistA™” www.osehra.org/osehra_vista is the result of more than two years of community collaboration.
OSEHRA VistA consists of OSEHRA VistA Core™ and OSEHRA Certified Vista components™. Together, they will increase collaboration and open source code sharing among the many members of the open source EHR community.
OSEHRA a nonprofit organization is working to accelerate innovation in EHR software and related technology. Founded in 2011, OSEHRA a rapidly growing open source community includes over 2,400 registered members representing 160 plus industry, academia, and government organizations.
The open source product has a small set of common codes that can be universally adopted by community members. It can be complemented by an extensive set of EHR component programs that have met OSEHRA certification requirements.
According to Mike Henderson, OSEHRA’s Director of Open Source Product Management, “OSEHRA VistA is not intended to be a complete EHR solution but to operate as a baseline of open source community code that will strengthen all VistA-based EHR implementations and accelerate community innovation.”
As he explained, “Until now, the open source VistA community has been unable to realize the full benefit of open source development. While many vendors and healthcare providers have used VA code or derivative versions of VistA prior to the initiation of the project, code sharing and collaborative development among the community members has been handicapped by the lack of a common baseline. The emergence of OSEHRA VistA will allow all community members to share portions of their code.”
Several companies are involved in the development and use of OSEHRA VistA. One company Medsphere Systems Corporation (MSC) www.medsphere.com has a unique perspective on the product since MSC’s Fileman package is the key part of the newly defined OSEHRA VistA core.
DSS Inc. www.dssinc.com plans to incorporate the new core into its flagship product called vxVistA and has provided virtually all of vxVistA to OSEHRA as open source code and plans to incorporate OSEHRA VistA Core into vxVistA, as reported by Robert Missroon, CFO.
In another example, Oroville Hospital www.orovillehospital.com in Oroville, California will also benefit from the product and own open source solutions. According to Denise LeFevre, Oroville’s CIO, “Release of these collaborative tools is a monumental accomplishment for the Open Source Community. This a perfect example of how adoption of open source can provide opportunity for groups to work together to create products.”
Rami Adwan, CEO of Electronic Health Solutions (EHS) www.ehs.com.jo/en in Jordan said, “OSEHRA’s launch has global implications as well. EHS has been an active member of the open source community and is working to deploy VistA to around 500 locations in the Kingdom under the Hakeem Program, a national Jordanian initiative launched to automate the public healthcare sector.”