The AMA, GAO, CBO and more than 5,000 practices agree that VistA is a clear winner and it has proven it self over more than 20 years of evolution. The VistA system and those offerings based on it are far and away the most widely used EMRs today. The VA healthcare system is the largest unified EMR system in the US, possibly in the world.
Why then isn’t VistA used everywhere and why is implementing it so hard for so many organizations? Those benefits have historically come at a high price with reliance on esoteric, out of the mainstream technologies that are difficult or impossible to reconcile with in todays environments like web-based and cloud computing. When ClearHealth began planning for its 3.0 edition in late 2006 we looked in detail at what makes VistA successful and how we could adapt that into a web-based and infinitely scalable comprehensive practice management (PM) and EMR.
Starting with usability research through high level data representations, the work-flow of VistA we’ll explore how the lessons and excellence of VistA are modernized using contemporary technologies in a system like ClearHealth 3 and how those lessons apply to all facilities implementing any kind of EMR.
David Uhlman is CEO of ClearHealth Inc. and a has been longstanding contributor and entrepreneur in open source technology for 15 years including contributions to Linux, Java, CentOS, and Joomla. He is a frequent speaker and contributor including previous talks at OSCON, SCALE, and others.
ClearHealth Inc is the company associated with the ClearHealth open source project, a practice management and electronic medical record system derived from VA VistA started in 2003 which now has over 4 million patients in more than 1,000 installations including notable large scale systems like Tarrant County TX, The Primary Care Coalition, The University of Texas Medical Branch and numerous Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHC) nationwide.
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