IntraHealth’s new Open Client Registry (OpenCR) represents a foundational global good supporting identity management needs in low resource countries using leading technologies, including the powerful ElasticSearch engine and the reference standards-based HAPI FHIR server. Building on its successful real-world pilot, IntraHealth and partners Regenstrief Institute (an affiliate of Indiana University), Ona, and IntelliSOFT seek to expand OpenCR into a robust, high-value global good and field test it with select ministries of health through a consortium that includes unparalleled international design and deployment expertise in client registry and identity management as well as leadership within the OpenHIE architecture and client registry communities.
Accurate patient identification is an essential component of comprehensive digital health infrastructure and essential for ensuring safe patient care, retention of vulnerable populations, epidemic control, and support of population-level health. The use of unique identifiers and identity management is the basis of shared health records and together they enable better health outcomes and improve resource allocation, provide for more accurate monitoring and population health data, and support data for strategic decision making.
IntraHealth recently completed the development of an open source, standards-based prototypical client registry, OpenCR, which was built to safely and uniquely identify patients who have demographic information stored in multiple health information systems. Leveraging IntelliSOFT’s relationships with ministries of health (MOHs), Ona’s understanding of the evolving security landscape, and Regenstrief’s expertise developing client registries in high and low resource settings, the consortium proposes to rapidly expand the functionalities of OpenCR to meet the global community’s unmet need for a standards-based, advanced, yet accessible, open source client registry to support longitudinal management of patient data across the health sector.
The initial use case driving development for OpenCR was developed to match and link records together under a single unique ID. With funding from Digital Square, the consortium team plans to complete the expansion of the OpenCR prototype into a broadly applicable global good across a wide variety of low resource settings and use cases to enable countries to track patient records across health information systems.
As a cornerstone of interoperability, OpenCR will help realize the vision of electronic health records (EHR) and health information exchanges (HIEs) to support scalable, safe, and effective care especially in low resource settings.
IntraHealth International will lead the overall solution development process with consortium partners Regenstrief Institute (an affiliate of Indiana University), Ona, and IntelliSOFT.
IntraHealth is a global health NGO with a 40-year history in developing successful data tools and digital health applications for health workers and managers, including OpenCR, a prototypical open source, standards-based client registry. We develop solutions that are open source, data-driven, sustainable, and collaborative. As a pioneer in the field of health workforce informatics, we’re committed to using technology, information, and analytical approaches to support the people at the center of our health systems. IntraHealth’s experienced Digital Health team will lead rapid expansion of OpenCR to meet the community’s unmet need: Luke Duncan has over 20 years of experience in software development, including leading the development of multiple data interoperability standards and reference designs. Richard Stanley, PhD, has 24 years of experience in information and communications technology. Finally, Dana Acciavatti has 19 years of experience strengthening health systems, including leading project management for IntraHealth’s portfolio of digital health projects.
The Regenstrief Institute’s Center for Biomedical Informatics, including the Global Health Informatics program, has 40 years of experience in the design, deployment, implementation and utilization of health information technology, with particular strength in supporting the use of standard terminology and standardized metadata, patient record-keeping systems, and standards-based health information exchange (HIE). Regenstrief is the creator of OpenMRS, an open-source electronic medical record system, and leader of the global OpenHIE community, which includes coordinating the OpenHIE Implementers Network, leading the OpenHIE Architecture Community and Review Board, and leading the Client Registry subcommunity. Regenstrief will support Work Package One with high-level solution design, will bring forth feedback from the OpenHIE community, and will contribute to Work Package Four. Regenstrief and Indiana University’s key team members are Dr. Shaun Grannis (IU) and Jennifer Shivers (Regenstrief). Shaun Grannis, MD, MS, FAAFP, FACMI, FAMIA and an Indiana University faculty member, has contributed to ensuring patient identity in a wide range of settings, including overseeing the development of the architecture for Rwanda’s first HIE client registry Jennifer Shivers, MFA, is a health information technology integration and process design specialist within the Regenstrief Institute with over 25 years of experience.
Established in early 2014, Ona (which means “to see” in KiSwahili) is a design and engineering social enterprise with offices in Burlington, Vermont, and Nairobi, Kenya whose mission is to help ensure equitable access to services to those who need them most. Ona builds technology that affords new opportunities for governments, international organizations, development organizations, and related actors to be increasingly collaborative, data-driven, and accountable to the people they serve. Ona is the lead technology partner for the open-source global good OpenSRP, currently deployed in more than 12 countries globally. Ona will contribute to Work Package One and deliver Work Package Three. Contributions will be led by Peter Lubelle-Doughtie, MS (CTO), Jason Rogena (Site Reliability Engineering Lead), Samuel Githengi (Senior Engineer), Emmanuel Tarus (Senior Engineer), and Craig Appl, MPH (Health Technical Lead).
IntelliSOFT Consulting ltd. is a Kenyan-based company that has been implementing health information systems in East Africa since 2009. IntelliSOFT will use its national client registry and unique patient identifier experience in Tanzania and Kenya to undertake Work Package Two, leveraging its strong relationships with MOHs and their partners to ensure effective field testing of OpenCR. IntelliSOFT’s contributions will be led by Steven Wanyee, an accomplished digital health expert with more than 18 years of experience implementing digital health solutions across Africa with support from Peter Anampiu, Kenneth Ochieng, and Susan Gath. Peter Anampiu is an experienced business analyst with over 10 years of experience, including implementing enterprise-level systems. Kenneth Ochieng is a senior software developer with over 10 years of experience developing large scale digital health solutions. Susan Gath is a certified Project Management Professional with more than 5 years of experience managing large digital health projects in East and Southern Africa.
OpenCR has been deployed on servers at the Country Public Health Laboratory of Uganda.