An Open Source Vision

Geraint Lewis | Health Service Journal (HSJ) | April 12, 2012

A campaign is attempting to bring VistA, an open source IT system, to the NHS. Why should you consider it?

December saw the launch of a new grassroots movement that is calling for a clinically led IT system for the NHS. Known as the NHS VistA campaign, the idea is to bring an open-source IT system called VistA to the UK.

VistA is a comprehensive electronic health record system that was developed by doctors working for the Veterans Health Administration in the US. The Veterans Health Administration provides health and social care to several million ex-service men and women.

Historically, it had a woeful reputation, but in the 1990s it underwent a remarkable transformation and the VHA is now widely regarded as one of the highest quality and best value healthcare systems in the world.