Digital health continues to change the way health systems reach communities around the world. However, when internet connectivity is limited or intermittent, health workers have trouble with using the full benefits of digital tools. This is a barrier that SolDevelo is working to remove. Last year, SolDevelo began working on a new module for OpenMRS. The module is called Sync 2.0, and its main purpose is to enable manual data synchronization.
How does it work?
OpenMRS collects details of patients’ treatment in the individual charts that enable healthcare professionals to create treatment plans based on every client’s full medical history. The new module streamlines data synchronization, providing health professionals with manual data synchronization at the headquarters. More predictable synchronization helps to prevent medical errors and ensures patient records are updated throughout the system.
Data is a powerful tool. OpenMRS Sync 2.0 builds trust in the timeliness and accuracy of the patient’s electronic medical records. In the face of limited Internet connectivity, healthcare professionals now have a tool that maintains their connectivity and up-to-date documentation. As a result, healthcare systems can now respond faster to epidemics and provide more efficient health services.
As a long-time contributor to the OpenMRS community, SolDevelo saw the importance of these features. We began developing Sync 2.0 as a pro bono effort before pursuing funding through Digital Square. We were main codders and our team worked for months for this project.
The power of community
There is a popular quote among the coders from John Saddington: “Software is never finished, only abandoned”. Sync 2.0 even after being released to the public still requires a lot of work.
Nothing shows the need for the new features as effectively as testing the software by people in real-life situations. And, of course, it also helps in detecting unexpected errors and bugs. That is why you need a good community around non-profit open-source projects. When someone detects some bugs, people from all around the world can offer help to fix some issues. Thanks to the community, we can assure that software not only will not be abandoned, but also constantly worked on.
Some people came up with an idea to unite developers and repair problems and bugs. Which were discovered during the Sync 2.0 release to the public. They created a Sprint, gathered problems from the community, and created tasks. 10 developers from Uganda are going to work for over 2 months with the mission of improving this project. They already have some tasks under review – the last step before publishing them to the public. All of the backlogs have more than a hundred issues. So there is still a lot to do. We can’t wait to see how their hard work will improve the Sync 2.0 project.
OpenMRS, besides being the Electronic Medical Record system, is also a community. It gathers a group of developers, implementers, and users, that are working together towards one goal – saving lives. The OpenMRS community is constantly growing, and everybody who wants to help can join them.