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OpenMRS Kenya Community

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  • 2015-02-20 Meeting on Subscription Module notes
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Feb 20, 2015



  • In Kenya, we have different concept dictionaries in different organizations. There is need to integrate the different dictionaries and this necessitated the creation of the subscription module.

    1. ITECH has been using an Excel Spreadsheet to manage concepts which are downloaded via Dropbox from MVP-CIEL Concept dictionary. This approach implies that no local concepts can be used and every time an updated concept dictionary is uploaded, the previously existing dictionary is completely wiped off and replaced.  Andy usually shares new versions of the concept dictionary periodically through Dropbox.

    2. This process is very manual and aside from SQL scripts that compare content in terms of concepts contained in different versions of Dropbox, everything else is manual.

    3. Kenya EMR has thus come up with the module that will help in updating and editing CIEL concepts.  This is the Subscription module. This module subscribes to the MVP-CIEL dictionary.

    4. The idea is to have one central server for Kenya that subscribes to the MVP-CIEL dictionary through the subscription module.  Most other organizations will rely on the central server for the concept dictionary library and all updates. No site will run the module as an independent entity. Everything will be managed centrally.

    5. Once Kenya has subscribed to the entire CIEL dictionary and have it running on the central server, periodic checks will be programmed to run automatically to check for any new concepts in the CIEL dictionary. All new concepts added to CIEL dictionary will be imported to the Kenya Central Server.

    6. A dedicated team of technical persons will manage the Kenya Central Server. They will receive requests from different organizations and individuals and process these, akin to what Andy does for MVP-CIEL dictionary.


  1. All organizations using OpenMRS will have to map their concepts to the CIEL concept dictionary.

  2. Dedicated team to manage concept needs of different organizations in Kenya. This team will also handle concepts unique to each organization to ensure no undue duplication of concepts occurs.

  3. Resources for procurement and management of the Kenya Central Server.


Implementation progress


  1. ITECH is working on the first version of the module and have 7 unresolved tickets before the module is implemented/ready for work.  Find link for all issues here
  2. The first version will handle imports of whole CIEL concept dictionary and updates to it thereafter.  It is hoped that the second version will be able to handle requests for new concepts from implementing organizations. That is to say; further versions will allow subscription to other dictionary sources other that CIEL.



  1. How will already created concepts be moved to the Central server?
    • The OCL is working on a way to handle this.
    • They are reviewing if all the concepts created are needed by the entire community.
    • This will be liberated after the release of the next version.

2. Different organizations have different and unique concepts. Who is to decide on the uniqueness of a concept to an organization?

    • Have to find a way to map the unique concepts to CIEL.
    • It seems that everyone using the module will have to get their concepts mapped to CIEL but a few challenges were noted:
      • How  to handle unique concepts

      • Lack of resources like time and personnel

      • Lack of Motivation 

 3. How far is the development of the module

  •  They have 7 tickets that they need to work on before the module is ready for use.
  • Nicholas Ingosi shared the link to the tickets .

4. Who will constitute the team that will review the concepts?

  • Will have to pick on people from different organizations with good skills on concept management.
  • Steven Wanyee to help make the decision based on individual’s time and skills.