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Medical Archive Generation with Object-Oriented Techniques

Objective

The MARGOT Project aims at developing user relevant technologies devoted to the computerisation of Hospital Departments.

As a matter of fact, Patient Records are the basis for information management. Patient Records, in principle, have common characteristics across all the departments of the same Hospital and similar departments of different hospitals. In practice they differ considerably, creating a number of application problems: Hospitals have problems in keeping track of the situation of a patient across several departments; a patient cannot move easily between different Hospitals, since his record cannot be easily moved (understood) by an institution other than the one that generated it; health systems (at any level) have problems at analysing patient data generated by several hospitals, etc. The project proposes a sophisticated IT solution for the Patient Records.

An Object-Oriented approach is used to encapsulate information structures and using methods (operations) as interface definitions. Virtual methods can be used to provide different implementations for the same operations. Mapping schemes (mapping methods, rather than data), can be used to control exchanges and integration of Patient Records across different departments.

Plan of the 1993 activities

The second (and last) year activities of the MARGOT project will be dedicated 1) to the implementation of the complete set of tools (Editor, Configurator, Manager, Exchanger, Integrator) constituting the MARGOT application environment generator and 2) to the implementation of applications finalised to demonstrate the technical feasibility of the approach and the practical usability and usefulness.

MARGOT deals mainly with the configurability and extensibility aspects of the Patient Records. MARGOT has a pragmatic approach for the health Record use, being open to the results of the CEC and AIM activities and projects dealing with the Health Record standardisation/definition.

The developed tools will allow creating an application going through several different phases:

- Patient Record Elements Definition phase;
- Patient Records Configuration phase;
- Applications Generation and Usage phase;
- Exchange phase;
- Integration phase.

The above phases are supported by a set of tools: The Editor, the Configurator, the Manager, the Exchanger and the Integrator. Their development is based upon an important technological advancement, such as the Object-Oriented Programming technique, allowing to encapsulate information structures and providing methods as interface definitions.

Application demonstrators, specified in strict cooperation with the Hospital Institutions which sponsor the project, will be developed to show the usage of the Editor, of the Configurator and of the Manager, in addition with the usage of the Integrator (for integrating Patient Records coming from different medical divisions) and of the Exchanger (for exchanging Patient Records between different medical divisions).

Europe wide cooperation with Hospital sponsors will allow to build up real-life applications and assess their validity in real health care environments of European countries. Ward Application Demonstrators Specifications are compliant with the real needs of the Hospital Institutions which sponsor the project, that are:

1) the General Hospital in Imola (Italy),
2) the "Presidio Diagnostico Specialistico di Medicina del Lavoro" (Occupational Medicine) in Bologna (Italy),
3) the "Santa Maria Nuova" Hospital in Florence (Italy),
4) the "Royal Victoria Infirmary" in Newcastle (United Kingdom)
5) the "Instituto Nacional de la Salud" in Spain.

Coordinator

Bull Italia SpA
Address
Via Parlamento 33
20098 Borgolombardo Milano
Italy

Participants (3)

ERITEL/ENTEL
Spain
Address
Paseo De La Castellana 141
28046 Madrid
MARI COMPUTER SYSTEMS LTD
Niger
Address
22 Hitech Village, Boldon Business Park, Witney Way, Boldon Colliery
NE35 9PE Tyne And Wear
Prisma Informatica SpA
Italy
Address
Villa Dell'ombrellino Piazza Di Bellosguardo 11
50124 Firenze