A New Approach to Connecting Information Systems in Healthcare
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A novel approach to managing the information needed by healthcare practitioners working collaboratively to care for a patient is described. Traditionally, healthcare information systems have been disease focused, containing patient data related only to a specific function or concern, such as laboratory results or a particular disease. As healthcare is moving toward a collaborative, patient-centric approach which involves care teams comprising a range of health professionals with different needs, skills and working practices, they require up to date, reliable access to more comprehensive patient data; Data which is currently spread through databases at several treatment centres including hospitals, GP’s surgeries and palliative care centres. Additionally, this information must be accessible without disrupting the current systems and services provided by each institution from these systems. A new approach to data sharing based on Virtual Organisations (VO) with a Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) which will allow patient-relevant data to be accessed from the diverse sources available is presented. Preliminary requirements and challenges that such an approach will need to meet are presented, and the approach is compared with existing approaches to illustrate its applicability to this domain. Finally, results and future work are covered.
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