Chapter 7

Systems of Systems in the Healthcare Field 1

 

7.1. Introduction

The medical field is undergoing major changes. Clinical exams are more and more often instrumented through the implementation, direct or indirect, of computerized systems. The same applies for the administrative data exchanged between hospitals and social security administrations when you (the patient, us!) are hospitalized. The ophthalmologist runs a digitalized dilated fundus oculi examination, which he stores in the patient’s file, in his computer. The patient uses his health insurance card so the health professional can create a file for the reimbursement of the medical procedures by social security, and pays the pharmacist with the card of his complementary health scheme. Those are only the most visible aspects of the evolution, rooted in the information world, which the medical field is currently going through.

The medical field is characterized by the diversity of its organizations (public or private hospitals, pharmaceutical industry, technical medical systems industry, health insurance funds, etc.), its agents (health professionals, working in health facilities or private practices), these agents’ activities (medical or paramedical agents, social workers, etc.), and the technical systems supporting their activities. The diversity of organizations, agents, activities and technical systems, favors their interaction, to exchange data, design healthcare networks, record the procedures undergone by the ...

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