Databases for Health Care by Gio Wiederhold (auth.)

By Gio Wiederhold (auth.)

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Additional resources for Databases for Health Care

Example text

It is nearly impossible to find two similar health care institutions that can serve the roles of test and control sites for an experi ment. But informal assessment of operational database systems takes place continuously. It is actually doubtful that any inappropriate system will remain in operation very long. Eventual acceptance of a medical database system can provide another, quite stringent evaluation of effectiveness. Databases do provide the information needed to measure cost, quality, and access, and can be viewed from this pointaloneto bea tool in the improvement of health care (Donabedian, 1978).

4 above, is now being extended with the use of distributed small computers (Data General Micro-Novas), which are to be placed at the health care delivery sites. Data entry and protocol advice can be supported locally; at night the systems communicate with the central database (GMDB), where the long-term data for the Southwest Cooperative Study Group are being maintained. The work on the PROMIS system has recently concentrated on the data entry and transmission problems (Schultz and Davis, 1979).

As our understanding of informatioh structures increases we will apply this understanding to medical databases. Choices can then be made on a rational basis. To apply new software technology to medical databases requires well-trained personnel. Some of the effort can be obtained indirectly: the use of commercial database products in medicine takes advantage of pre-existing tools. Their application still requires medically oriented expertise. Both the complexity and the importance of health care provide the needed incentive to obtain the attention of databaseoriented scientists.

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