This blog was written by IRIS’ Chief Technology Officet (CTO) Roger McCreery. Roger is the systems engineering lead for IRIS’s DoD Military Health System (MHS) projects.
One of my favorite success stories of government accomplishment was the accomplishments of the MUMPS Underground within the VA to build an early electronic health record (EHR) in the 1980’s and 1990’s. Teams that were comprised of clinicians and programmers worked together to jointly design and develop a significant product that helped satisfy many of VA’s clinical needs and provide a foundation for the future technology within the VA. However, the product, the Decentralized Hospital Computer Program (DHCP), included the ability of VA Medical Center personnel to do substantial modifications to the code and code sets such that the eventual centralization of data across VA was a significant challenge. To this day, establishing standards across the enterprise is an on-going challenge at VA.
Somewhere in those early years, DoD chose to take a copy of DHCP and modify it to support DoD Military Treatment Facility needs. With significant outside assistance, most notably from SAIC, the Composite Health Care System (CHCS) had many of the same good ideas – and obstacles. AHLTA eventually provided broader enterprise-wide support including a centralized Clinical Data Repository (CDR). Vestiges of CHCS persist today. More importantly, the culture of technical staff working with clinical staff to deliver exactly what is needed continued. While certainly laudable, this approach also came with a large amount of customization and, of course, maintenance expenses. Continue reading →
2017 marked the 11th year of IRIS’ work helping organizations with health information interoperability challenges. We are humbled by the great people we work with as partners, customers and employees. In these experiences we share knowledge and the common focus of nationwide health interoperability. In 2017, IRIS trademarked the term Interoperabilitsts™, a term IRIS’ staff coined to describe the IRIS team’s core function on the projects they support.
Coordinating Patient Matching Activities Through PCOR
IRIS supported The Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) on the Patient Matching Algorithm and Linkage (PMAL) project, one of 5 projects funded by a partnership between ONC and the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE) and is one of many Patient Centered Outcome and Research (PCOR) programs. In this role we provided project management services and coordinated many initiatives supporting patient matching including Population Health, Electronic Quality Measures (eCQMs), and Gold Standard Algorithm Testing. In addition, PMAL facilitated several monetary challenges including Move Health Data Forward, Oh, The Places Health Data Goes and The Patient Matching Algorithm Challenge. Continue reading →