Going Open Source
PatientSource can advise on how to use open source software. Our consultants extensive experience of opensource software will prove invaluable in recognising and supporting the best systems for your needs. We can save the average hospital over £130,000 per annum.
Going Open Source
At PatientSource, we are healthcare Open Source experts, in fact we run most of our own business processes on Open Source software.
In many cases Open Source software is zero-cost, meaning you can wipe tens of thousands off your annual software licence bills by making the switch. Additionally Open Source software enables you to crack open your IT systems and customise them in whichever way you want. We can help your healthcare organisation make the most of Open Source opportunity, and can provide on-going support to your Open Source solutions.
Real Savings for a modern NHS
As of the end of April 2015 NHS Trusts will see their proprietary database licence fees dramatically increase from around £18k to £140k* plus around £37k support cost per annum. By switching to an Open Source solution a trust can eliminate this cost while still keeping all their existing applications running without interruption. This is just one example of the way in which our consultation services can help bring real savings to the NHS by adopting modern technologies.
Open Source solutions are used and trusted by a huge number of well know organisations across the world. In the UK police.uk, gov.uk and NHS Spine2 are just a few of the trusted organisations and services that have already made the transition. Most modern IT firms base their solutions around Open Source technology as they are maintained and tested by a large, experienced development community. Simply by the nature of Open Source, security flaws can be quickly identified, reported and fixed whereas traditional closed source solutions have been know to have security flaws in place for long periods of time as they are rarely identified by the limited number of developers that work on the code.
Open Source Solutions Available:
There is a huge range of Open Source software packages available covering just about every business process imaginable. We've helped healthcare organisations across the globe set up, configure and implement hundreds of the best Open Source packages. Here are just some of the systems we have implemented for clients:
- Customer Relationship Management (CRMs): SugarCRM, vTiger, Zurmo
- Databases: MySQL, MariaDB, PostgreSQL, MongoDB
- Data security: PGP, SECCURE
- Documents: LibreOffice
- Document Sharing and Collaboration: Alfresco, LifeRay, Nuxeo
- Document Version Control Systems (VCS): Mercurial (Hg), GIT, Subversion
- E-mail systems: Roundcube, Postfix, Dovecot
- Enterprise Resource Management (ERPs): OpenERP
- Remote working: OpenVPN
- Network security: OpenSSL, Snort IDS
- Single sign-on: LDAP
- Support & issue tracking: Redmine
- Telephone switchboard & VoIP: Asterisk
- Video conferencing: XMPP, Asterisk 11+
- Virtual servers: Debian, Ubuntu, Cent OS
- Web frameworks: Symfony, Django
- Web servers: Apache2, nginx, lighttpd
Benefits of Open Source:
- Low-cost or zero cost: Open Source software is available to use without any licence fees
- Free from vendor lock-in: If you ever need to change or expand an Open Source system, you can do so yourself. Anybody can write plugins and extensions, not just the original vendor.
- Higher performance: Most Open Source software uses more modern components than closed source counterparts, and undergoes more rounds of optimisation.
- More secure: Because Open Source code is visible to everyone, most popular packages have undergone ten times more scrutiny than closed source products. There are fewer security vulnerabilities in Open Source code compared to closed source
- More stable: Because Open Source code is visible to everyone, a higher percentage of bugs have been fixed in popular packages compared to closed source products.
- No need to asset-track software licences: Open Source code is released under conditions that give you absolute freedom to install the software and copy it to other computers. There are no licence fees and no licences that expire.
- Absolutely customisable: Open Source software bears all its secrets. You can look at the code and change bits as you please, and even tap into certain points to add your own custom functionality.
Professional support for your Open Source solutions:
- Fast Response Support Team: In the Open Source world some software packages are provided "as is", while others are provided via companies who offer optional paid-for enterprise support. PatientSource can set you up with a fast response enterprise support for all of the above packages via a reputable firm.
- Staff Training: We recognise that any staff facing changes can impact operations and require more training. Where possible we minimise this impact by favouring familiar solutions and provide full support and training where this is not possible.
- Experienced Implementers: For many packages, it helps to have an experienced hand guiding you. PatientSource can help you select and install Open Source solutions. Documentation varies widely between Open Source packages, but tends to be less thorough and less well maintained compared to closed source. You will need to be familiar with command-line interfaces, configuration files, file permissions and software dependencies to install most packages. PatientSource is skilled in these areas and takes care of all the nitty gritty.
So, once you've decided you'd like to explore Open Source, we can help you choose the best solutions and ensure seamless integration with your existing systems and processes. We'll get it configured and up and running so you can enjoy enjoy a secure, stable and licence fee-free system.
Get Open Source
To find out more about how PatientSource can help you make the switch to and make the most of Open Source, get in touch:
*based on four 8-core servers - cost for which approval has been sought by a large NHS Trust in the Midlands.