Grants for LibreHealth Educational EHR Project (LEEP)

Now that we have four university beta testers we have entered a new phase. We can anticipate input after the beta test which will hopefully give us “lessons learned” to understand how the software might be tweaked to improve the educational experience. We will also determine what the future cost to a university of a hosted instance should be.

@sunbiz was supposed to investigate federal grants this fall. Depending on his comments I will probably also look at funders such as Xerox and Corning that focus on STEM grants. The steering committee should determine if the recipient should be the SFC or a university such as IUPUI ( @tony, @r0bby, @judywawira, @downey )

It is not too early to develop a list of potential enhancements and an estimate of the cost to implement. Some thoughts:

  • Better reporting software with csv output

  • SQL query ability

  • Changing labs to individual results

  • Clarifying medications versus medications in the backend

  • More sample patients and/or synthetic encounter/notes

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That’s excellent thank you, we will definitely be discussing those issues in the coming month.

We need to discuss how best to handle the SQL query capability. A lot can go wrong with this…they should work locally for SQL queries imho…or at the very least be limited to read-only queries

That won’t really work, but we could provide a reporting platform that replicates the data to a read-only source with a reporting tools and ad-hoc query tools.

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Yes, I can just foresee one student making a mistake and BAM – they delete everything…

The other option is we provide a VM/Docker Image with everything included and they work off of that. This way no two students can screw things up for others.

Once @yehster gets back I’m sure he will have an opinion. For the time being, I believe the Data World project I set up will handle all of the data analytical projects on NHANES data any student or faculty member would care to explore. From what I could tell from the 9 universities that expressed interest in our project, none were doing SQL queries on data, which I find somewhat surprising. Seems like data analytics is only found in a minority of graduate informatics courses and is often an elective course.

I did just review grants from Corning, Xerox and Alfred P Sloan Foundations. Details: LibreHealth Educational EHR Grants.docx (118.1 KB)

Corning grant sounds good but they tend to support grants where they have offices. The Xerox option sounded great but looks like they are not accepting any new submissions. I would ask @sunbiz and at least one person on the steering committee to look at the Alfred P Sloan Foundation grant because you start with only a 2-page letter of intent. @tony, @r0bby, @judywawira, @downey They focus on STEM for higher education. In my opinion, the combination of our project with the Data World “sister” project really supports STEM in a unique way. Students can focus on learning about EHRs and simple descriptive statistics or go further with SQL queries and machine learning; all based on real NHANES data

We have alternatives that we can use – ideally I’d like each student to be in a sandboxed environment

You mean each in their own sandbox, having to play trucks all by themselves? Wouldn’t they learn more about social interaction if you let them all play together (with mommy supervising of course)?

My concern is that one or then goes rogue and starts dropping tables or changing data.

Hint: Just don’t allow any students with an on-line identity called "Bobbie_Tables". The easiest thing to do is to send them a PM asking "Hey, wanna help me DDOS someone?" Hint #2: If they say yes, then drop their access, then prepare to receive a DDOS attack.

Also, whatever the grant is – be sure to factor in the fact that if we are hosting these, there should be some money allotted for me supporting the sites.

@r0bby. I thought the plan all along was to conduct a free beta test and then determine what needs to be done to improve the software and then going forward all universities who chose to use the EHR would pay a hosting fee. In the survey, we will ask what the 4 beta testers would be willing to pay per year or per semester. The steering committee can establish what are reasonable hosting fees. It has been my understanding that some universities with good IT support could opt to host the software on their own servers.

I don’t think any granting organization will pay hosting fees, so that is a separate issue

Perhaps it is premature to be discussing grants until we get feedback from faculty to see what they need. Not too early to discuss future hosting fees and some ballpark estimates by @yehster what it might cost to fix issues we know need fixing, such as individual lab reports and the ability to search for abnormal labs (low or high)

After the beta test @rhoyt :slight_smile: Perhaps we’re putting the cart before the horse.

Understood, but in the mean time, we should make estimates regarding hosting fees and fixing obvious deficiencies. I don’t think those decisions should wait until the last minute


Thanks @rhoyt I’ll read through your doc today. I like the idea of a STEM related grant/project.

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I expect to hear back from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation this month so I have my fingers crossed. This week I’ll look at other sources of STEM grants.

For example, NSF has STEM educational grants but it appears that they support educational research which may or may not include software development. I can’t upload their PowerPoint presentation but here is a link to their site. If there is interest I can email the sponsor for clarification.

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@tony @yehster @judywawira @sunbiz

I did find an interesting grant area of educational technology using the SBIR approach. The problem is the deadline of January 25 which we could not possibly meet.

They did link to a similar NSF Seed Money grant "Educational Technologies and Applications" which I now need to explore. They do permit an executive summary to be submitted with feedback in 2 weeks. I believe their deadline for submission is June which is doable but I need to investigate more.

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The SBIR Grant seems to focus on students with disabilities/special education, so besides the deadline concern, our area of interest does not seem to be a good fit.

For the NSF Grant, the EA3. Simulations and Gaming Technologies topic area might be a good fit, as we are looking to simulate real experiences that students will encounter as clinicians.

One set of exercises that could be good to add to our platform would be to have the students enter data, like vitals and medications on patients in the system… (We would provide them with lists of such data as an “external process” from the EHR itself…)

Another idea might be to provide more detailed cases for students to manage. For exercises similar to the Clinical Skills portion of the U.S. Medical Licensing Exam, instead of the printed history notes, that are typically taped to the door for the simulated patient, all of the information could be provided in the EHR instead, and the student would also make entries in the EHR.

The general idea would be to provide more realistic interactions with the EHR than our current set of exercises.

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Sorry, the SBIR link should have taken you to a more general page that included three priorities. Here is the one I thought was pertinent: PRIORITY AREA 1:

Education Technology Products Used by Students or Teachers (or other Instructional Personnel) in Authentic Education Settings

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Hmm… It might be worth trying to scramble to prepare a proposal for SBIR… The grant size for Phase I is $200,000 which is of the sort of scale we could manage… A lot is possible in two weeks :wink:

We can work on flushing some ideas out as part of drafting a proposal, which would still be valuable even if we don’t receive an award.

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