The Challenge


The hospital situation

(based on an actual hospital, slightly modified to protect the hospital's identity)

  • around 950 beds
  • 11 medical departments
  • 6 diagnostic laboratories
  • 6 surgical departments
  • 20 operating rooms
  • 36 nursing wards
  • 1 central pharmacy
  • 1 central material depot
  • more than 7 proprietary specialized software
  • numerous standard office software

The main challenge

  • All proprietary specialized software are NOT compatible with each other. They cannot work with each other.
  • Most of these software are highly platform & OS dependent. This makes the network highly inflexible.
  • Each software has its own database and data format. This leads to redundacy in data storage. Data sharing is impossible.
  • The communication between some of the major software installations is limited to patched import/export interfaces which themselves are not standardized. This leads to difficulty in upgrading and development of the system, high costs and long downtimes.
  • Some software installations are totally noncommunicable with other programs. This forces the manual copying of data to other programs and causes high costs, delays, high level of erroneous data, and low efficiency.
  • Each program has its own different GUI mask and user navigation design. This leads to difficulties in learning and using the programs and forces the personell to learn many different navigation techniques and usage. This presents a higher learning curve, heavy burden to already "overloaded" personell, and causes a higher incidence of error in the documentation. The forced multiple training and the absence of personell from their actual workplace gets longer.

Some samples of real conflict situations

  • The "bundy clock" software cannot communicate with the duty planner software. This forces the payroll department to manually countercheck an employee's duty with the data from "bundy clock" program. This causes high error probability, low efficiency, longer worktime, and higher stress.