Health IT innovator
Areas of Expertise:
Fred Trotter is a hacktivist. He works for social change by coding and promoting Open Source Health Software. In recognition of his role within the Open Source Health Informatics community, Trotter was the only Open Source representative invited by congress to testify on the definition of 'meaningful use' for the federal health care incentives law (Meaningful Use). Trotter also represented the Open Source EHR community in negotiations with CCHIT, the leading EHR certification body.
Trotter is the original author of FreeB, the worlds first GPL medical billing engine. In 2004 Fred Trotter received the LinuxMedNews achievement award for work on FreeB. Fred Trotter was an editor for the Open Source EHR review project with the American Medical Informatics Association (AMIA), Open Source Working Group (oswg). Fred is a member of WorldVistA and is the programmer behind Astronaut Shuttle which is the first cloud-based VA VistA offering.
Fred Trotter is a recognized expert in Free and Open Source medical software and security systems. He has spoken on those subjects at the SCALE DOHCS conference, OSCON, LinuxWorld, DefCon and is the MC for the Open Source Health Conference. He has been quoted in multiple articles on Health Information Technology in several print and online journals, including WIRED, ZSnet, Government Health IT, Modern Healthcare, Linux Journal, Free Software Magazine, NPR and LinuxMedNews. Trotter has a B.S in Computer Science, a B.A in psychology and a B.A in philosophy from Trinity University. Trotter minored in Business Administration, Cognitive Science, and Management Information Systems. Before working directly on health software, Trotter passed the CISSP certification and consulted for VeriSign on HIPAA security for major hospitals and health institutions. Trotter was originally trained on information security at the Air Force Information Warfare Center.
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March 12 2014Cryptocurrencies, like bitcoin, could revolutionize money to the same degree that the Internet has revolutionized communication. However, like any economic marketplace, human exuberance is the greatest threat to the cryptocurrency phenomenon. Markets fail to the degree that the market can … read more
September 04 2013There is a storm brewing in Healthcare. Doctors have been in charge of healthcare for a long time, and have become comfortable, sometimes even arrogant, with their authority and power. But dumb data beats smart doctors every time. Forward thinking … read more
August 09 2013Recently, Health and Human Services (HHS) Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released a request for public comment on how they should handle the reversal of an injunction that prevented them from revealing specific information about how doctors perform. … read more
July 31 2013Big drug companies are not what they used to be. It is harder to find new drug candidates, to test them, and to get them approved than ever before. Drugs that are “mere chemicals”¯ are becoming more and more complex. … read more
June 04 2013To achieve the the triple aim in healthcare (better, cheaper, and safer), we are going to need intensive monitoring and measurement of specific doctors, hospitals, labs and countless other clinical professionals and clinical organizations. We need specific data and specific … read more
March 28 2013Currently, anyone can crowdfund products, projects, causes, and sometimes debt. Current U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) regulations make crowdfunding companies (i.e. selling stocks rather than products on crowdfund platforms) illegal. The only way to sell stocks to the public at large … read more
January 18 2013The DocGraph project has an interesting issue that I think will become a common one as the open data movement continues. For those that have not been keeping up, DocGraph was announced at Strata RX, described carefully on this blog, … read more
November 18 2012At Strata RX in October I announced the availability of DocGraph. This is the first project of NotOnly Development, which is a Not Only For Profit Health IT micro-incubator. The DocGraph dataset shows how doctors, hospitals, laboratories and other health … read more
August 24 2012Yesterday, Meaningful Use Stage 2 was released. You can read the final rule here and you can read the announcement here. As we read and parse the 900 or so pages of government-issued goodness, you can expect lots of commentary … read more
August 02 2012Earlier this week, Proteus announced that they have been approved by the FDA to market their ingestible microchips for pills. Generally, the FDA approval process for devices that are totally new like this is a painful one, with much suffering. So … read more
June 06 2012Patients, doctors and providers have a unique set of privileges that do not line up exactly with a traditional concept of ownership. read more
May 06 2012In this digital world, health data that's 36-hours old can only be analyzed as a post-mortem. Health data that's 30-days old is already rotting. read more
March 15 2012Fred Trotter has often said the problems in health IT are political and not technical, but sometimes a picture can drive a point home better than words. read more
February 24 2012Jim Langabeer, CEO of Greater Houston Healthconnect, discusses the implementation goals and hurdles related to a Direct Project pilot program. read more
February 23 2012Given the way that healthcare is financed in the U.S., it's reasonable to expect that many doctors will have a Direct email address to communicate with other doctors and their patients in a few years. read more
February 21 2012As patients and practitioners gather on Twitter, the service has evolved into a peer-to-peer healthcare marketplace. That's why Twitter co-founder Biz Stone's keynote at HIMSS is so fitting. read more
January 25 2012People will eventually get better care from artificial intelligence, but for now, we should keep the algorithms focused on the data that we know is good and keep the doctors focused on the patients. read more
January 11 2012Taking a cue from the Quantified Self movement, the programmable self is the combination of a digital motivation hack with a digital system that tracks behavior. Here's a look at companies and projects relevant to the programmable self space. read more
January 10 2012Clinicians often encounter multi-step software processes that seem laborious. Sometimes that's due to a design flaw, but other times that process has been intentionally constructed as a crumple zone. read more
January 09 2012As a society, we need to get comfortable with the notion that Electronic Healthcare Records will both help and hurt people. On balance, they will do far more good than harm. read more
January 05 2012The epatient community uses digital tools and the connective power of the Internet to empower patients. Here, Fred Trotter offers epatient resources and first steps. read more
January 03 2012Fred Trotter discovers that a QR code embedded in a TSA poster at the Orlando airport links to justinsomnia.org, which is about as far as you can get from a government website. read more
November 04 2011Working on software that addresses patient safety issues is one of the few ways that a software developer can impact quality of life rather than convenience of life. Health contests are fun enough that you might even forget that you're changing the world. read more
October 21 2011Clinical people tend to focus on meaningful use incentives as "how do I get paid to install an EHR." But geeks can see the bottom line: healthcare reform is pointless unless we get the measurement issue right. read more
October 20 2011Veteran Affairs' VistA electronic health record system is famously resistant to being managed by version control. That needs to improve if VistA development is to be run as a meritocracy. read more
October 19 2011Veterans Affairs is taking the bold step of making governance of the VistA system open source. If you care about healthcare software, the new Open Source Electronic Health Record Agent (OSEHRA) is worth your involvement. read more
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Webcast: 6 New Year Resolutions for Health IT
"Meaningful Use and Beyond is well written, readable and provides a good understanding of the current position of US health informatics."
"The highest compliment I can pay Trotter and Uhlman is to say I wish their book had been available to me as a decoder ring when I started out."
"The book provides a very thoughtful and detailed view of Federal programs to accelerate the use of Healthcare IT. I really enjoyed the expert interpretation of the standards and policy activities which I've experienced first hand over the past five years."
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