Category Archives: Clinical Process

Proteus Open Source Now!

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This is to announce the availability of source code for tools related to clinical decision support guidelines model, Proteus under an open source license (EPL). The open source development will proceed under the new Proteus Intelligent Processes (PIP) project.

With this announcement, we are also opening up the project for general participation. The code and related information can be found at http://kenai.com/projects/pip/.  The home for Proteus will remain at http://proteme.org. Introductory information about the rule authoring system GreEd is available at http://proteme.org/blog/greed/.

This also coincides with the release of the version 2.7 (beta), which has several new features to make knowledge authoring more exciting and easy.  Take the new application for a spin by downloading it from http://www.proteme.org/download3.html.

What’s New

I list some of the new features in Version 2.7 below:

Protean (Clinical Workflow Authoring Tool)

  • Sharing executable knowledge
  • Unlimited undo and redo
  • Promotion and demotion
  • Move an item from one location to another
  • Search your library of components

GreEd (Rule Authoring Tool)

  • Undo and Redo
  • Default Inference
  • Semantic Guidance and constraints
  • New operators for your expressions, like [N of M] and [Between]
  • Date Fields and Operations

Read more about the new features here: http://kenai.com/projects/pip/pages/WhatIsNew.

This is a major milestone for Proteus which was made possible by contributions from many wonderful people. Much of the development for this version was done in the Semantic Data Capture Initiative project of Henry Ford Health System, my employer. Besides Henry Ford, Lister Hill Center of National Library of Medicine played a critical role at the nascent stage of Proteus. Several ideas related to metadata usage and rule authoring were developed at City of Hope National Medical Center.

We will be scheduling a web seminar to provide a quick introduction to Proteus, GreEd and the PIP project and demonstrate the tools. Please let me know if you are interested in participating.

I will be at the upcoming AMIA annual symposium, in San Francisco and will be happy to meet you if you are planning to attend.

We welcome your participation and feedback.

Feel free to contact me.

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The Power of the Checklist

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We know that most successful medical departments exploit the power of the checklists to achieve their results. Some interesting thoughts about this in a blog here:  Checklists aren’t just for pilots. Do watch the video clips and read Atul Gawande’s New Yorker article referred to in the blog. Gawande says:

If a new drug were as effective at saving lives as Peter Pronovost’s checklist, there would be a nationwide marketing campaign urging doctors to use it.

The question we need to ask is how to best integrate checklists in the clinical information systems. The answer to me is obvious: by having a process-oriented approach. I think the current Clinical Systems are based on the table paradigm which do not lend themselves to ordering the sequence of activities that need to be performed. Therefore it stands to reason that the approach that we are pursuing (Proteus), which has a process orientation at its core, is not just for clinical decision support but also for guiding all activities in the clinical world.

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