[Haskell-cafe] Possible Haskell Project

Tom Hawkins tomahawkins at gmail.com
Tue Jun 2 10:56:11 EDT 2009

On Tue, Jun 2, 2009 at 12:12 AM, Antoine Latter<aslatter at gmail.com> wrote:
> A good place to start is http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HL7 , which is a
> not-for-profit organization which tries to define interfacing
> standards between medical devices and medical records providers.  I
> haven't worked much with their standards so I don't know how useful
> they'd be. I think they might be geared towards vendor-to-vendor
> interop.
> As for the legacy of people who thought it wasn't complex:
> http://histalk.blog-city.com/guest_article__repeat_after_me_healthcare_data_models_matter.htm
> I don't agree with everything the guy wrote, but it's an interesting article.

In an industry like this that generates so much data, I think all
parties are tempted to record and track as must as possible.  But
after all the lab results, x-rays, and MRIs, it's the two or three
paragraphs of a doctor's dictation that matter.  Maybe patients and
doctors would be best served if they had an easy way to store,
retrieve, and query these dictations.

I see this as an abstracting database problem:
- records (dictations) are write-once-read-only data pertaining to a
subject (patient)
- some users (doctors, patients) are allowed to view a subset of
records on a subject
- some users are allowed to create new records on a subject
- some users are allowed to change capabilities of other users

Then, built on top of an abstract distributed data storage problem:
- a network of computers store a collection of write-once-read-only
data chunks (encoded, fragmented records)
- chunks are distributed to minimize access time
- chunks are distributed to maintain data integrity through system failures

Both of these abstract problems can be used for many things outside
the medical field.  So even if an electronic health record project
does not pan out, the code could find its way into other applications.


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