PIH EMR USER INTERVIEW
Date: 05 Mar 2008 (by email)
User: Implementer, Tanzania
EMR Experience: Have designed forms and customised OpenMRS for users in Tanzania . Have also designed and developed other medical records systems.
What do you use the EMR for?
- I am an implementer so my job is to customise OpenMRS - I am not an end user.
What works well (and why):
- Overall the system works well once it is up and running. The way of searching for patients or concepts using AJAX is very useful. The system responds quickly when the server is on a local network, even when it has a lot of data
What doesn’t work well (and why):
- The system is not very easy to install, with many hitches coming up especially with Tomcat (for example Tomcat looking for global variables in different places at different times)
- For the user to register a new patient they have to fill in the short form and then return to the dashboard and fill in the long form (where the extra patient attributes are).
- The patient attributes on the patient registration form are displayed in alphabetical order rather than in a logical order
- The report tools are highly complex (we are not actually using the OpenMRS report tools for this reason and relying on another report tool which links to the OpenMRS back end)
Wish List for EMR:
- The developers of Tomcat should be encouraged to make it more reliable
- It would be better if the long form could come up automatically when registering a new patient rather than the short form, or if this could be an option to be switched on or off
- There could be a screen for implementers to specify the order in which patient attributes appear on the patient registration form
- The report tools could be developed to be made much more user friendly. The implementer should be able to specify that a particular report prompts the user for specific parameters (e.g. dates) and the implementer should be able to automate the rest of the report (specify the way the cohort is chosen, and how the report is displayed eg using BIRT). The end result being that the user chooses from a list of implementer-pre-programmed reports, is prompted for parameters and gets the report immediately nicely laid out.