Notice E0 Phase 1 Shelf Readiness

Notice E for promoting investments in digital health global goods

Advancing OpenELIS Global Shelf-Readiness through Improved Quality Assurance

Two-sentence overview: 

OpenELIS Global aims to improve its Shelf-Readiness through a  transition from a manual software release testing model to a robust, comprehensive, and systematic automated testing process that will improve efficiency and reliability, reduce maintenance costs for the software, and facilitate re-use of OpenELIS Global code by community members. This investment will result in 1) adoption of the OpenHIE testing framework and tooling for automated testing of OpenELIS, 2) collaboration with the OpenHIE Laboratory Information Systems Community of Practice (LIS CoP) to establish re-usable LIS interoperability test cases that can be adopted by other software steward members in the LIS CoP, and 3) dissemination of LIS/LIMS software testing protocols and guidance for broader global goods communities to adapt in their software testing practices.

Executive summary: 

OpenELIS Global is recognized as a leading open-source laboratory information system (LIS), used for nearly a decade in Cote d’Ivoire, Haiti, and Vietnam; and as part of the Bahmni HMIS distribution. The government of Mauritius also recently adopted OpenELIS in its national reference laboratory to manage information related to SARS-CoV-2 diagnostics and pandemic response. 

The OpenELIS Global team will employ the proposed investment from Digital Square to use the OpenHIE testing framework to develop and implement an automated testing framework for its software development cycle. Moving from manual to automated testing will improve efficiency, lower the cost of maintenance, and most importantly, increase implementer trust in the product. Adoption of a framework will increase the reliability and completeness of software testing. A more robust quality assurance process will help ensure that OpenELIS Global implementers can rely on the software from the moment they download it to the time they deploy it in laboratories, to facilitate delivery of high-quality results and data to healthcare providers, patients, and public health agencies.  

The OpenELIS Global team plans to collaborate with the OpenHIE community to incorporate the OpenHIE testing framework and tools into its quality assurance processes, using the OpenMRS QA automated testing approach as our model. We will collaborate with the OpenHIE Laboratory Information Systems community (LIS CoP) to prioritize and develop LIS interoperability test cases around established LIS interoperability specifications published by the LIS CoP that can be reused by other LIS software in the OpenHIE architecture, specifically in the Instant OpenHIE project.  In addition, I-TECH will leverage its expertise in creating high-quality training curricula to develop a learning session on automated testing for broader global goods consumption, including in the OpenHIE Academy, to aid in disseminating standardized test cases and promoting a shared foundation for quality assurance within the OpenHIE architecture.

Consortium Team: 

The Digital Initiatives Group at I-TECH (DIGI), University of Washington (UW) is composed of digital health experts, experienced global goods developers, and country-level implementers in global public health who lead multiple digital health global goods communities of practice, and lead the identification of best practices and solutions that are the best fit-for-purpose in resource constrained environments.  DIGI is the founder and ongoing steward for the OpenELIS Global codebase, supporting both the widely used OpenELIS code base and contributions, and the growing community at large.

OpenHIE Laboratory Information Systems Community of Practice (LIS CoP) is an OpenHIE subcommunity bringing together laboratory informatics experts and software teams to advance LIS/LIMS best practices and standards for use in digital health implementations.  The LIS CoP collaborated closely with DIGI in Notice C in the OpenLIS-OpenMRS integration work that led to the publication of the OpenHIE LIS-EMR architectural pattern. The LIS CoP is co-founded by a DIGI faculty co-lead.

Digital Health Atlas: 

OpenELIS Global in Côte d'Ivoire : DHA Unique project ID CI4QbYvpdz

OpenELIS Global in Haiti: DHA Unique project ID HToQeZV6ep

Geographic Reach: 

Côte d'Ivoire, Haiti, Vietnam, Mauritius

WHO Classification: 
Laboratory and diagnostics information system
Application Status: 
Pending Review & Investment
Application Tags: 
interoperability
openhie
training courses and content
Laboratory Systems

Comments

A few thoughts / comments:

- how is this work building on / expanding the LIS COP work that is underway?

- interested around the sharing of content around the Academy; are there other channels that are being considered too?

- It would be really interesting to see the work call out more directly the validation processes (IQ, OQ, PQ processes).

- are there any explicit plans to align the deployment with the existing Instant OpenHIE project?

Great questions Carl - this was helpful for the team to realize that they needed to clarify some of the points they were making in the concept note, since the team had included most of this in their thinking on this concept.  I'll provide some brief answers here for you though as well.

  • How is this work building on / expanding the LIS COP work that is underway?

    • We will collaborate with the OpenHIE Laboratory Information Systems community (LIS CoP) to prioritize and develop LIS interoperability test cases around established LIS interoperability specifications published by the LIS CoP that can be re-usable by other LIS software in the OpenHIE architecture, specifically in the Instant OpenHIE project.  Those interop specifications are led by DIGI with the OpenELIS-OpenMRS collaborative work, and being published now by the LIS CoP, so this would take that work and automate the testing of that specification for the LIS CoP to utilize and for Intant OpenHIE to use when plugging-in an LIS component.  

  • Interested around the sharing of content around the Academy; are there other channels that are being considered too?

    • There are many channels we would be open to dissemination of knowledge sharing and education materials produced in this work.  OpenHIE Academy would be an obvious choice due to the planned collaboration with OpenHIE, but the materials could be disseminated in any web-based forum or through a series of webinars or packaged with compatible materials for digital health trainings in general - such as the WHO AFRO/ITU Digital Health Workshop.

  • It would be really interesting to see the work call out more directly the validation processes (IQ, OQ, PQ processes)

    • I think adding those aspects of QA into the software release process is super interesting.  To add in any IQ, OQ, or PQ, we would need to set some benchmarks - which probably needs to be along some sort of standard discussed in the larger OpenHIE community.  Has this been brought up in OpenHIE?  Is Instant OpenHIE doing anything along these lines to evaluate installation, operations, and performance?  I think we could flesh this idea out possibly in the full application - but the priority should be first with getting the core business cases automated, and then refining the testing of the details around those business cases.  I’d love to talk more about this with you Carl, as this should be thought about for OpenMRS QA as well.

  • Are there any explicit plans to align the deployment with the existing Instant OpenHIE project?

    • Yes, that is outlined in the concept note - utilizing the LIS CoP to work on automated testing that reflects the LIS CoP published interoperability workflow specifications and can be used to plug in LIS into Instant OpenHIE.