Information System (IS)
Automated system that uses computer hardware and software to record, manipulate, store, recover, and disseminate data.
Application of e-commerce to the healthcare industry, including electronic data exchange and links among healthcare entities.
Rapid implementation planning process, systemic approach that helps to establish their EHR objectives, translate them to functional and technical requirements, and identify all resources needed to implement an EHR.
Planning, Design, Building, and Implementation.
Set of related policies and procedures that are performed step by step to accomplish a business-related function.
Data entered into a hospital system.
Outcomes of inputs into a system.
The machines and media used in an information system.
A program that detects the hardware components of a computer system to perform the tasks required.
Information Technology (IT)
Information Technology (IT)
Computer networks in an information system. Computer technology (hardware and software) combined with telecommunications technology (data, image, and voice networks); often used interchangeably with information system (IS)
Specialty software used to facilitate the assignment of diagnostic and procedural codes according to the rules of the coding system.
Information System Activities
Input, Processing, Output, Storage, and Controlling.
Operation Support Systems (OSS)
An information system that facilitates the operational management of a healthcare organization. Efficiently process business transactions, support communication and collaboration among business units, and update business databases. Example: R-ADT (Registration, Administration, Discharge, and Transfer.
Transaction-Processing System (TPS)
Example of an operations support system. Computer-based information system that keeps track of an organization’s business transactions through inputs and outputs. Examples: patient admissions, employee time cards, and supply purchases.
Enterprise Collaboration Systems
Example of an operations support system. They enhance teamwork and are sometimes called office automation systems. Examples: electronic mail, appointment scheduling, project management software to coordinate tasks and schedules, and voice conferencing.
Enterprise Resource Planning System (ERP)
Enterprise Resource Planning System (ERP)
Large information system that manages data for an entire healthcare business.
Management Support Information Systems
Information systems that provide information primarily to support manager decision making.
Management Information System (MIS)
Computer-based system that provides information to a healthcare organization’s managers for use in making decisions that effect a variety of day-to-day activities.
Might be a monthly report that lists the percentage of incomplete records.
Decision Support System (DSS)
Provides information to help users make accurate decisions. Analytic models included.
Mathematical interpretations of real systems such as pharmacy drug inventory systems.
Executive Information System (EIS)
Information system intended to facilitate and support the information and decision-making needs of senior executives by providing easy access to both internal and external information relevant to meeting the strategic goals of an organization.
Access to high-level information in addition to the ability to drill down to departmental-level data.
Expert System (ES)
Knowledge system built from a set of rules applied to specific problems.
Knowledge Management System (KMS)
Information system that has the potential to increase work effectiveness. Supports the creation, organization, and dissemination of business or clinical knowledge and expertise to providers, employees, and managers throughout the healthcare enterprise.
International network of computer servers that provides individual users with communications channels and access to software and information repositories worldwide.
System of connections of private Internet networks outside an organization’s firewall that uses Internet technology to enable collaborative applications among enterprises.
System Development Life Cycle (SDLC)
Traditional way to plan and implement an IS in an organization. Major phases of the cycle are planning, analysis, design, implementation, and maintenance.
Strategic Information Systems Planning
Process of identifying and assigning priorities to the various upgrades and changes that might be made in an organization’s ISs.
Chief Information Officer (CIO)
The senior manager appointed by a governing board to direct an organization’s overall management.
Usually initiated by the submission of a project requisition or request from a department for the development, modification or purchase of an information system.
Joint Application Development (JAD)
Valuable technique used to identify the goals, objectives, and required functions of a proposed information system. Made up of a group of end users, system analysts, and technical development professionals who are brought together to analyze the strengths and weaknesses of the current IS and to propose functionalities for the new system.
A model or example of what a completed IS may look like. Allows for a maximum end-user input while speeding up the analysis and development process by simulating potential end versions of the system.
Unified Modeling Language (UML)
Object-oriented modeling language that assists in the documentation of a software project by specifying, visualizing, modifying, constructing, and documenting the artifacts of a system under development.
Use Case Diagram
Documents the functions of a system from the user’s point of view.
Data Flow Diagrams (DFD)
Graphical representation of the flow of data through an information system, modeling its process aspects.
Specifies the functions of the system and provides the design or blueprint of the proposed system.
Full-colored prototypes that illustrate the visual design of various page templates in a system.
Application Service Providers (ASP)
Internet is used to access systems such as EHR, financial information systems, CPOEs, and other healthcare information systems software that are located at a remote site.
Computer application that may be purchased from a vendor and installed without modification or further development by the user organization.
Complex undertaking and includes the development of the computer programs, testing the system, and development of system documentation, user training, and system conversion.
Running both old and new systems until the managers and staff are confident that the new system works.
Implementing portions of the new system over time instead of installing the entire system all at once.
Direct Cutover Approach
Organization stops using the old system and starts the new one on a specific date.
Maintenance and Evaluation Phase
Activities that ensure both the short and long term success of the information system.
Collecting facts, figures, and measurements.
Involves finding out opinions.
Information Architecture (IA)
Art and science of organizing and labeling websites, intranets, online communities and software to support usability.
Fastest and highest-capacity machines built today. Used in large-scale activities such as weather forecasting and mathematical research.
Only computers available until the 1960s. They can perform millions of instructions per second, are designed to connect input/output devices over a long distances, and can handle hundreds or thousands of users at the same time. Used in hospitals to store payroll, personnel, billing, and accounting data.
Can support hundreds of connected users at the same time via terminals consisting of a keyboard and a video screen. Cheaper than mainframes.
Very powerful desktop computer used mainly by power users such as graphics specialists for multimedia production.
Personal Computers (PCs)
Personal Computers (PCs)
Fastest-growing type of computer today. They come in a variety of sizes, including desktop, laptop, palmtop, and pen-based.
Lightweight mobile devices that provide special functions such as taking notes, organizing telephone numbers and addresses, and calendaring.
Software designed to assist a user in performing either a single task or multiple, related tasks.
Accept input in continuous analog signal form, and output is obtained in the form of scaled graphs. They have low memory size and have fewer functions. They are very fast in processing, but output return is not very accurate.
Operates by counting numbers or digits and gives output in digital form. Represents data in digital signals 0 and 1 and then processes it using arithmetic and logical operations. They give accurate results, they posses high-speed data processing, they can store large amounts of data, they are easy to program and use, and finally, they consume low energy.
Contain both the digital and analog components. Users can process both the continuous (analog) and discrete (digital) data.
Different pieces of hardware that are connected to CPUs to make them more functional and user-friendly. Input, processing and memory, output, storage, and communications.
Keyboards; microphones; scanners; pointing devices such as mice, trackballs, light pens, and intelligent tables; sensors; and biometrics such as fingerprints, handprints, and iris scans.
Machine-readable representations of data, typically dark ink on a light background.
Any piece of computer hardware equipment used to communicate the results of data processing carried out by an information-processing system to the outside world. Most common example is the screen. Other examples are printers, faxes, and speakers.
Secondary Storage Devices
Include a flash drive, hard disk drive, magnetic tape, and an optical disk drive. Drives may be external or internal.
Microchip implanted in a CPU’s hardware that processes instructions sent to it by the computer and software programs.
Assist communications among different computers.
Integrated Services Digital Network (ISDN)
Lines that allow digital data to be transmitted through copper wire telephone lines.
Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL)
Cable modems connected through TV cable lines.
A set of words and symbols that allows programmers to tell the computer what operations to follow.
First generation of programming languages, machine language, consists of ones and zeros.
Second generation, assembly language, uses a standard set of abbreviations to replace some of the ones and zeros of machine language. Usually defined by the hardware manufacturer and therefore are not portable to different computers.
Use words and arithmetic phases to construct programs such as COBOL and BASIC
Very High-level Languages
Fourth generation of programming languages which includes report generators, query languages, data management languages, and application generators. These languages were developed to reduce programming effort, time, and costs.
Allow users to speak in a more conversational way with the computer and are part of the expanding field of artificial intelligence (AI)
Conductor for all the hardware components and the application software.
Consists of the master programs, called the supervisor, that manage the basic operations of the computer.
Graphic User Interface (GUI)
Style of computer interface in which typed commands are replaced by images that represent tasks.
Generally used to support, enhance, or expand existing programs in a computer system.
Software that translates a program written by a programmer in a language such as C++ into machine language, which the computer can understand
Assist with word processing, accounting, database management, graphics presentations, scheduling, e-mail, time management, and other functions performed in offices and homes.
Programs designed for a specific purpose.
Education and Reference Software
Encyclopedias, anatomy atlases, and library searches.
Games and audio/video entertainment.
Organized collection of data saved as a binary-type file on a computer.
Data Base Management
Oracle, SQL Server, Sybase, and Access.
Stores data in predefined tables that contain rows and columns similar to a spreadsheet. Data that can be stored is currency, real numbers, integers, and strings (characters of data).
Combines the best of the relational and object-oriented databases. Uses both traditional data types (such as currency, integers, and strings) and advanced data types (such as graphics, movies, audio and so on).
Structured Query Language (SQL)
Used to store and retrieve data in relational databases. It gives information system the ability to query and report on data and to insert, update, and delete data from the database.
Database Management System (DBMS)
Collection of computer programs that controls the creation, maintenance, and use of a database, Important purpose is to maintain the data definitions (data dictionary) for all the data elements in the database.
Basic fact such as LAST_NAME, FIRST_NAME, DOB, RACE.
Set of columns or a collection of related data items.
Uniquely identifies each row in a table.
Ensure that each row in a table is unique. Must not change in value. Number that is a one-up counter or a randomly generated number in large databases.
Column of one table that corresponds to a primary key in another table.
Provide contextual framework and graphical representation that aid in the definition of data elements.
Anything about which data can be stored and can be a concept, person, place, thing, or event.
Central building block that supports communication across business process. It improves data validity and reliability within, across, and outside the enterprise because it ensures that each piece of data can only mean one thing.
Accuracy, accessibility, comprehensiveness, consistency, currency, definition, granularity, precision, relevancy, and timeliness.
Good Database Design
Process that involves a team of individuals who have good relational database knowledge and extensive technical database design expertise.
Provide a way of ensuring that data that are entered or updated in a database by authorized users do not result in a loss of data quality.
Personal Database Management System
Runs on a client; used for small projects such as strong contact information.
Server-Based Database Management System
Runs on a server; runs as a separate application from a personal computer system.
Consolidates and stores data from various databases throughout the enterprise. Designed to perform data analysis rather than support routine operations.
Process that identifies patterns and relationships by searching through large amounts of data. Used to identify methods for cutting healthcare costs, suggest more appropriate medical treatments, and predict medical outcomes.
Voice and data communications within an organization.
Health Information Exchanges (HIEs)
Patient care data seamlessly transferred to where they are needed, at the time they are needed, and to who needs them,
Collection of hardware components and computers interconnected by communication channels that allow sharing resources and information.
Device that sends the information
Device that receives the information
Mechanism that connects the transmitter to the receiver or the air.
Create the message that is transferred from the transmitter to the receiver as electrical pulses.
Computers that access shared resources.
Computers that share resources such as printers or hard-disk space across the network.
Tasks that a network server performs, such as facilitating e-mail, web, Internet, and printer connections; providing database access; performing backups; providing network communication; coordinating security; and managing files.
Local-Area Networks (LAN)
Connects computers in a relatively small area.
Specialized client/server network that uses Internet technologies.
Wide-Area Networks (WAN)
Connects devices across a large geographical area. Often simply consists of two or more LANs connected by telephone lines.
Any type of computer network that is not connected by cables of any kind.
How data flows through a network.
Older topology where each computer is connected to a common backbone or trunk through some kind of connector.
Each machine is connected to a central hub.
Each device is connected to the network in a closed loop or ring. Each machine is identified by a unique address.
Combines characteristics of bus, ring, and the star topologies, but allows for redundant routes for data transfer.
Enable computers on the network to communicate with each other.
Connection Setup Phase
Initiate a connection between computers on the network.
Data Transfer Phase
Protocol that allows the computers to transfer data.
Connection Release Phase
Protocol allows the computers to terminate the connection.
Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol (TCP/IP)
Basic communication language or protocol of the Internet.
File Transfer Protocol (FTP)
Protocol used to exchange and manipulate files over a TCP/IP network.
Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP)
Protocol used to transfer and display information in the form of web pages on browsers.
Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP)
Internet standard for electronic mail transmission across Internet Protocol (IP) networks.
Health Level 7 (HL7)
Founded in 1987, not-for-profit, ANSI-accredited standards developing organization that provides comprehensive standards for the exchange, integration, sharing, and retrieving of electronic health information that supports patient care.
Transactions between business and public consumers.
Transaction(s) between business. For example, between a wholesaler and a retailer.