A Model for improving interoperability of healthcare systems in a distributed environment
Ogutu, Benson Wandera
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Access to patient health record for a patient from one healthcare institution to another has had its fair share of challenges. The two healthcare institutions under study have got their own distributed healthcare systems but none of these institutions can access or share their patient health records across. This has hugely been down to the complexity of the healthcare domain, standardization challenges, legacy systems, legal challenges, resistance to change, privacy and security. The study developed an interoperability model for improving patient health records access and sharing across distributed healthcare systems. The modelled application allows two or more distributed healthcare systems to access and share patients’ health records. This model tries to work around the challenges identified above making the system an open system such that any healthcare system can be plugged into it and facilitate data sharing and access. The study applied agile software methodology as it allows for faster iterations and frequent release while factoring in user feedback. The modelling of interoperable distributed healthcare systems is of great importance as it allows for ease of access, portability of data, data confidentiality, integrity and security, capture of data in different formats, file sharing, reduction of costs both to the patients and healthcare institutions and makes the systems robust and scalable.