What is a Software Platform?
"A major piece of software, as an operating system, an operating environment, or a database, under which various smaller application programs can be designed to run" (Reference.com)
Windows, Apple's OS X, and Linux are software platforms. This website is implemented on the free and open source Joomla! content management system platform. EMRs, EHRs, and clinical groupware are becoming platforms for launching and managing smaller programs, variously called modules or components. Joomla has thousands of such extensions. Eventually EMRs, EHRs, and clinical groupware will be extended and customized in a similar fashion.
The Total Cost of an EMR Solution Stack With
vs. Without an Open Source EMR Platform
The EncounterPRO EMR Clinical Groupware Platform is Not Pediatric Specific
The currently available downloadable and free-to-use EncounterPRO-OS EMR Workflow System is indeed pediatric-specific. We provide both the EncounterPRO-OS EMR Clinical Groupware Platform and the database content and workflows that turn it into an EncounterPRO-OS Pediatric EMR Workflow System (EMR workflow systems are an important category of clinical groupware). Different specialties rely on different content and workflows. Current users of the proprietary closed source version of EncounterPRO span a dozen ambulatory specialties. We and EncounterPRO-OS partners will gradually release other versions of content and workflow in order to provide clinical groupware for each of these specialties, as demand dictates and resources permit.
The Economics of Free and Open Software Platforms
Let's talk about your economic interests as an EMR developer and solution provider.
"By establishing a successful open source platform, software firms can compete more effectively across technology stacks and thereby increase their addressable market." (The Economic Case for Open Source Foundations)
By dramatically reducing the cost of the EMR groupware platform on which your module or component runs, the money saved reduces the total cost to the physician user while at the same time increasing revenue you can invest in product enhancements.
The lower the total cost of platform plus your application modules, the more customers will be willing to purchase your combined solution.
That's the economic argument for a free and open source EMR clinical groupware platform. You'll reach more customers and make more per customer while they pay less. Where did their cost saving and your revenue come from? The expensive proprietary closed-source traditional EMRs, that's where!