I came across an interesting article recently in the International Journal of Biomedical Engineering and Technology1. The article discusses the difficulties in designing an EMR system capable of providing optimal access to data elements while remaining efficient and user friendly. Â It was a good look at the current state of healthcare data exchange.
This paper discusses how to share medical information between heterogeneous applications via web services. Our design theory is based on a real-options framework, performance analysis and experience building iRevive, a working web-services-enabled pre-hospital documentation application. The trade-offs between efficiency and flexibility are examined in the context of exchanging information based on emerging standards in the healthcare world. These trade-offs are quantified using a real-options approach. We illustrate the importance of uncertainty in deciding the architecture enabling an application to access medical information from Electronic Medical Records (EMRs).