A Few Notes on the Enthusiasm Around 'Open Source' Health IT in the UK

Rob Dyke | HANDI | July 6, 2012

There is a renewed vigor in healthcare IT. Lots of great [open source] projects curated by enthusiastic people, encouraging new thinking around the definition, development design and delivery of technology for healthcare. Here I’m thinking about DigiHealthCon, HANDI, NHS Hack Day and the eHealthOpenSource competition and Pipe and Hat Club. I’m involved in three organisations: eHealth OpenSource as Secretary, HANDI as a co-founder and NHS Hack Day as a participant and advocate. When I’m not doing things relating to those three, I’m a Director of Tactix4 Limited, an opensource healthcare IT company. I thought I’d share some of my thinking about these projects and how I see them fitting together.

eHealthOpenSource is a long standing grouping of industry, healthcare orgs and academics born out of CfH. It’s going through a reboot right now as a supplier / advocacy / support organisation. It’s mission statement is:

    To support open source deployment in the NHS and UK healthcare by:

  • monitoring and promoting the use of open source software
  • nominating appropriate open source suppliers for ICT tenders
  • developing and encouraging best practice in open source software acquisition

eHealthOpenSource will support and further the adoption of CAOS (Complete Adoption of Open Source) healthcare. It is a stimulant on the supply-side by supporting and networking open source projects, companies and consultants.

HANDI is a new Community Interest Company, a not-for-profit organisation, formed to further the ‘app paradigm’ in healthcare IT. The ‘app paradigm’ is the antithesis of Big Bang, Rip and Replace, One System To Rule Them All. HANDI is a stimulant on the demand side. By facilitating networking between healthcare organisations at events where messages of agile and openness are strongly advocated by experienced practitioners, HANDI encourages a wide variety of people and organisations to challenge and change both technology and procurement practices towards better healthcare IT. HANDI also lobbies government, quangos and trade bodies in support new entrants into healthcare IT by advocating the HANDI vision of stacks, platforms and openness. Through openness and through stacks and platforms, the much discussed ‘healthcare apps’ to connect-all, in terms of patients, records, services, can flourish...


Open Source and the U.K.

There have been quite a few news clips gathered by Open Health News (OHN) over the past year about 'open source' solutions and activities in the U.K. To see some of these, go to http://www.openhealthnews.com/search/node/%22open%20source%22%20%22UK%22