Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?
Linux Software

Linux in healthcare computing 37

CsJmn writes "I came across this short article on Linux in the January issue online edition of Healthcare Informatics magazine (a healthcare computing industry trade magazine). The story is about half way down this page ." The story is about the sucessful introduction of Linux to Huntsville Hospital in Alabama. Apparently, John Carpenter, Microsoft's worldwide healthcare industry Marketing manager is worried "It will certainly drive us to put new stuff into our products."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Linux in healthcare computing

Comments Filter:
  • The masses are slowly getting it, but too slow for my taste.

    "Users that have customized Linux to run their apps must also maintain and support it, which requires staffing."

    Windoze does not require staffing? And huge wastes of precious time to baby-sit?

    "Given Windows' dominating presence..., combined with healthcare's traditional conservatism
    regarding new technologies, Linux is a long way from mainstream."

    Doesn't NT mean "New Technology"? Isn't Windoze 98 new technology?
    And W2k, what about that? Is it Ok to rush out to migrate to this crap
    but Linux - I don't know, that's "new technology"...

    "The days of having enormously expensive, proprietary systems
    is going away because the information is now in everyone's hands."

    I'm glad to see more people are beginning to view "proprietary" as a dirty word.
  • "It will certainly drive us to put new stuff into our products."

    "Stuff"? In Microsoft's case, "stuff" should probably be replaced with another "s" word..

    Q: What are the system requirements for Windows 2000?
    A: Uh.. .. Stuff..

  • This just shows they just plain don't get it. People don't want "new stuff." They want something that will fucking work . What a concept.
  • Hmm, I guess John Carpenter missed that BugNET article [bugnet.com]. Or maybe "stuff" is his euphemism for "bug fixes."
  • Always mount a scratch patient.
  • You mean the "stability" angle alone isn't going to do it for them? (read with a sarcastic tone.)

    Come on MS, that's how you compete in a free marketplace! You INNOVATE! Make a better product or sell a comparable one for cheaper.

    I wonder what they would put into their products if it weren't for competitiors like Linux, WordPerfect, Intuit, Netscape and others... IMHO, not much.

  • Try telling that to the next black minister who finds his church razed to the ground one Sunday, or the next black guy they burn alive.
    I'm sure they'll agree with you completely.



  • Maybe it's my mood lately... But something about hearing GNU/GPL stuff refered to as "Freeware" just rubs me the wrong way.

  • I guess that would be the proprietary protocols they talked about in the Halloween document.

    Same old MS - it's innovation, we didn't break that guy's stuff on purpose... sure....
  • Yeah, I think they should add a long beep to the Blue Screen Of Death so that it would be more familiar to healthcare professionals. Also, I think they should incorporate a complete 3D visualisation system into the NT kernel. It's the logical place to integrate it. Then they should have a touch pen shaped like a scalpel, add random medical jargon to the help files, and put the word "stat" in dialog boxes thusly:
    Explorer has suffered a fatal error and has to exit stat.
    You must reboot stat for these changes to take effect.
    Windows has detected a heart monitor attached to this computer. Please insert a floppy disk containing a driver stat.
  • Hopefully, they'll start with QUALITY!!!!!
  • Do those guys still exist?
    What century are they from?
  • The guy states that, "Win NT would crash alot",
    and the Micro$oft reply is, "we better add some
    stuff"? To agree with a previous post, "Why not
    fix the OS"? It's getting too funny!
  • New stuff like "De-commoditized protocols" is more like it...
  • First, let's not have loss-of-data comments. Hospitals are anal enough that they print out everything at the same time they enter it into any computer. If you go for surgery somewhere, the appointment scheduling and room scheduling will quite likely be on NT. But that won't spell your doom.

    However, an NT crash in a hospital is still a major headache. The typical large hospital has one cluster of operating rooms (for the prescheduled surgeries) next to a large recovery room (pre-op right next door as well, as well as a waiting room). In the recovery room's desk area is an NT server that handles room bookings with all of the hosptal's wards. When the LAN is working, it's awesome. By the time the patient ir out of the RR, the nurse station at his ward has staff knowing exactly when to expect him, what specialists to call in an emergency, diet, prescriptions, and as an added benefit, the patient's friends wait for him by his room, rather than outside the RR (where only one or two should stick around -- a crowd around there would be in the way). The patient's paper records arrive with him.

    When the LAN crashes, this we enter nightmare land. Paper records have to be copied and delivered by hand, as well as confirmation that the ward is ready for the patient. (forget about doing it over the phone -- too many details to convey) The hospital can't divert too many staff for this, and can't use the tube shoot (it's mostly for delivering samples and drugs). The recovery room gets crowded with patients who aren't cleared out, and the hospital may have to postpone prescheduled surgery (I saw this happen as a volunteer in one place.)

    So, knowing Linux has made an inroad is very good news. There was only one real impediment: you can't ask nurses to start learning Unix commands, or they will give you a very dirty look
  • Microsoft could start a campaign FUDding people about the risk of their medical records being seen by scary Hackers (TM), and then offering a product with a decommoditized protocol for hospital LANs for transfering medical records in a proprietary format.

    That's about all they could do at this point.
    The FDA is capable of barring their entry to anything they could seriously munge up.
  • I wasn't sure what I was reading for a second there. Maybe I've sniffed too many rubber tires...

  • The next article on the page refers to some computers "infected by the year 2000 bug." What's with this? Is the general public this mal-informed or has someone just deleted their wetware dictionary?
  • They are referring to it as "Open Source." damn! Next time I should wait until I'm finished reading the article before I reply!
  • Well, I guess that the "freedom to innovate" mantra is starting to hurt.

    "You mean we actually have to COMPETE???" And with free software at that! Oh I get a warm fuzzy feeling. :)
  • An abacas? Stone Tablets? Get a clue.

    I would trust my life to Linux and just about any commercial unix I have ever dealt with. Also VMS. I have the experience that tells me that these are stable and can be trusted.

    I wouldn't keep recipes on RedmondWare.

    Of course, you are perhaps refering to patient record confidentiality? That is another issue.

    If I'm in the hospital, I'd like some degree of certainty that the staff knows what my lab results are and what meds I'm to get. If they are keeping that info on NT, they had better give me lots of prozac.

    -- hgc
  • I would like to add that Huntsville is one of the most high tech cities in the nation. You can throw a rock and it will quite likely hit a rocket scientist, optics engineer or a genetics researcher. I remember reading some statistics that per capita it has the highest concentration of computers in the country. It's research park is the second largest in the world. Only Silicon Valley is larger. It is not at all surprising to see its non-technical industries on the cutting edge with the rest of the city.
  • As a matter of fact, there's quite a large group of Linux users in the North Alabama area. We host LUNA Lunches every few weeks, and have InstallFests every other month. At the last Fest, we had well over 50 people show up! (Not sure of the exact max; I was working). There are quite a few more than that subscribed to our mailing list, and some of our more distant members are trying to create Middle and North-Western Users Groups as well. If you're within driving distance and interested in attending the next Fest, or you'd just like more information, check out our page at:
    http://luna.huntsville.al.us/ .

    LUNAtics -- to arms!

e-credibility: the non-guaranteeable likelihood that the electronic data you're seeing is genuine rather than somebody's made-up crap. - Karl Lehenbauer