Informatics

Health Informatics covers a wide range of disciplines and technologies (e.g. data warehouses and enterprise reporting ) which support effective health service delivery. Dialog is instrumental in designing, building and maintaining key informatics solutions for the health sector.


▼     Google Glass for emergency medicine

Dialog was commissioned by the National Trauma Research Institute to pair Google Glass with the Trauma Reception and Resuscitation (TR&R) system.

This implementation improves emergency medicine by using Glass to help clinicians focus their attention on a patient while providing a live visual display of the patient’s vital signs. Clinicians also receive auditory cues to initiate TR&R’s life-saving interventions.

The device can allow leading specialists to connect with hospitals in regional areas or developing countries to provide real-time advice by seeing what that doctor sees.

▼     Health Information Resources Directory (HIRD)

NSW Health administers the state’s public hospital and health system. It provides public sector health services through Area Health Services (rural and metropolitan), the Children’s Hospital at Westmead, Corrections Health Service, the Ambulance Service of NSW, and the NSW Department of Health.

The NSW Department of Health is responsible for funding public health services, developing policies, managing public health issues and monitoring the performance of the health system. The Health Information Resources Directory (HIRD) project established a database of the information resources currently held by NSW Health. These key information resources include data standards, data collection details, minimum data sets, details about data items in strategic computer application systems and data models.

The HIRD project also provided Internet and intranet access to information models, standards and data definitions, and provided information on all current and past health data collections via a single inquiry point. Dialog undertook the HIRD project from the stage of detailed design through to deployment.

▼     NSW Health Data Warehouse

NSW Health awarded to Dialog the contract to develop and implement the first release of NSW Health’s new data warehouse. The delivery of a new data warehouse is a critical element of NSW Health’s on-going Business Information Program (‘BI Program’) and this project constitutes a key progression of that program. The design of the first release of the new data warehouse was delivered through a previous phase of the BI Program.

After a separate evaluation process, NSW Health determined that the preferred platform for the data warehouse build was Microsoft. NSW Health appointed Dialog to review the design, build, implement and transition the first release of the data warehouse to production, from established warehouse design documentation and on the given software platform. This project was structured to deliver to the high level requirements for the data warehouse. Dialog’s responsibilities were as follows:

  • Build, test and implement Release 1 of the new NSW Health BI data warehouse based on NSW Health selected software
  • Provide direct implementation support staff
  • Transition the data warehouse into production and BI operations

Dialog also provided software development services and traditional System Implementation (SI) services to facilitate Health’s transition to a new governance framework to support the new data warehouse.

▼     HealthCollect data warehouse project

The Victorian Department of Human Services’ Metropolitan Health and Aged Care Services (MHACS) Division maintains a data warehouse known as the Victorian Health Information Reporting System (VHIRS). VHIRS had a number of operational & functional deficiencies.

In addition to these limitations, VHIRS only catered for acute health data and was not hosted within DHS’ corporate IT infrastructure. As part of the HealthCollect Redevelopment Project, DHS engaged Dialog to assist in the redevelopment of VHIRS as a whole of health data warehouse and to migrate it to the DHS corporate IT environment.

This data warehouse collects data from numerous sources and stores it in a single repository. Dialog was involved in analysing and re-engineering each of the feeder systems and identifying what data needed to be included in the new Data Warehouse. The source systems were:

  • Agency Information Management System (AIMS)
  • Department of Veteran Affairs (DVA) files
  • Transport Accident Commission (TAC) files
  • Victorian Integrated Non-admitted Health Dataset (VINAH)

Dialog provided expert staff with SQL /data warehouse skills to reverse map VHIRS. This involved specifying all current data transformations, dependencies and associated business rules that were to be used to define the source target mapping specifications for the new Data Warehouse. Dialog was also engaged to assist in the design of the Data Warehouse and to confirm the design of the data model.

▼     Victoria Integrated Non Admitted Health (VINAH)

Dialog produced a web based solution, VINAH, to enable Caulfield General Medical Centre (CGMC) to provide required reporting to the Department of Human Services (DHS) on a monthly basis. Data is assembled from various systems and then sent to DHS in HL7 V2.5 format, as mandated by DHS. The major functions implemented in VINAH are:

  • Read data from Cerner and CHORd data extracts
  • Transform the data to meet the DHS’s reporting requirements
  • Transmit the data in HL7 format to the DHS portal
  • Provide exception reporting

VINAH was developed using the Microsoft.NET framework connected to a Microsoft SQL Server 2000 database. It enables CGMC to:

  • Reduce the amount of manual effort involved in providing the information required by DHS
  • Provide reporting capabilities for CGMC’s management on the data collected and sent to DHS VINAH is expandable to cater for future DHS and CGMC management reporting requirements for all CGMC data, not only that data required by DHS.
▼     Health Informatics Framework (HIF)

The Health Informatics Framework (HIF) is able to assist clients in the health sector with general information management and more specifically, the delivery of better services through surgical and clinical audit. The HIF is:

  • A scalable near real-time data warehouse
  • Able to operate as part of a hospitals enterprise architecture or in a departmental or research environment
  • Able to be federated in a regional or state wide network of data warehouses
  • Based on HL7 to capture and stage data
  • Internal architecture compatible with the HL7 v3 Reference Information Model (RIM) ensures efficient translation to and from HL7 v3
  • Compatible with Open Source research systems
  • Able to Support the efficient development of audit data marts for clinical/surgical audit, decision support systems and research
  • Designed to eliminate read/write contention, through the use of the near real-time architecture

The basic architecture of the HIF comprises an ETL layer to extract data from transactional systems, then transform and load it via a staging area into the data warehouse. The data warehouse holds the superset of all data extracted from the upstream business systems. Purpose specific, extensible data marts are populated from the data warehouse, according to reporting requirements.

▼     Restrictive Intervention Disability System (RIDS)

Dialog developed the Restrictive Intervention Disability System (RIDS) at DHS Victoria.

The system is responsible for capturing restrictive interventions applied to clients who reside in accommodation provided by the Disability Services Division. The application is widely used across the state of Victoria. As legislation changes or new requirements arise, the application can be easily updted. The RIDS application is a .NET web based application which uses an SQL database.

▼     Elective Surgery Referral Service (ESRS)

Dialog redeveloped the DHS Elective Surgery Referral Service (ESRS) to address functional deficiencies and provide a solutions architecture that allowed it to be migrated to DHS’ n-tiered Enterprise Application Zone (EAZ). The ESRS application comprised an ASP.NET presentation layer, a VB.NET application layer and MS SQL Server database layer.

▼     Patient Safety Screen and Peri-operative Flow application

Dialog designed and developed the Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne Patient Safety Screen and Peri-operative Flow application.

The Patient safety screen is a visual display that is available in Theatre that lists the patient’s details, their operation and any allergies that may be important for the surgical clinicians.

The Peri-operative flow application gives the ability for the patient’s journey to be tracked within the hospital. 

▼     Austin Health data mapping

Austin Health is the major provider of tertiary health services, health professional education and research in the northeast of Melbourne. Austin Health is world-renowned for its research and specialist work in cancer, liver transplantation, spinal cord injuries, neurology, endocrinology, mental health and rehabilitation.

Austin Health wanted to rationalise and improve the management of referring doctor’s care provider details. In order to do this Austin Health needed to understand where the treating doctor data was stored, updated and which information was up-to-date.

The Dialog team analysed and documented where treating doctor data was stored throughout the hospital systems. The project reported on the state of treating doctor’s data and suggested ways of improving the integrity of that data. The documented business requirements covered the quantity, storage and usage of the data. Dialog also delivered a Gap Analysis and recommended an appropriate solution to implement a single data management solution.

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