Open Source IT helps Louisiana hospital for meaningful use

Open-source technology has been selected by ABeauregard Memorial Hospital, a 60-bed, acute care and community hospital to automate its medical records. Beauregard will implement Medsphere’s OpenVista electronic health record system. As a rural, acute and primary care facility, Beauregard is on track to fully and meaningfully deploy OpenVista by June 2010 and become eligible for financial incentives as outlined by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, according to its utives. The flexibility offered by open source technology enables Carlsbed, Calif.-based Medsphere to provide a portfolio of clinical transformation services by tailoring OpenVista to the specific needs of Beauregard, say Medsphere officials.

In addition to Beauregard, West Virginia’s state hospitals, Blue Mountain Hospital in Utah, Midland Memorial Hospital in Texas, Wyoming’s Memorial Hospital of Sweetwater County, Silver Hill Hospital in Connecticut and Lutheran Medical Center in New York all share best practices and source code enhancements to OpenVista code at, the Web portal for the ecosystem where Medsphere partners communicate and collaborate.2009 saw a gain in the momentum of use of open source healthcare IT solutions, nationally, starting with West Virginia Sen. Jay Rockefeller’s (D-WV) recent call for the public funding and use of proven open source EHRs to improve patient care. The Rockefeller bill, called the Health Information Technology Public Utility Act of 2009, would require the federal government to develop standards for an interoperable health IT system and create an open source electronic health records solution available to all healthcare providers at little or no cost. VistA EHR created and developed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs over 20 years ago has its commercialized version in form of OpenVista that has been credited with helping turn the agency into a national leader in quality patient care.

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