Health software firm offers free drugs database

Electronic medical records software supplier e-MDs will make its homegrown pharmaceutical reference database freely available as...

Electronic medical records software supplier e-MDs will make its homegrown pharmaceutical reference database freely available as an open-source product.

The company has been reviewing the accuracy of its reference materials and hoped to make the information freely available by the middle of July. 

It is opening up its database as a "goodwill gesture" to suppliers selling to small and mid-sized doctors' practices, and it tends to target practices with fewer than 20 doctors; its largest customer has 44 physicians.

Suppliers that license reference materials from other publishers normally pass on the licensing fees to their customers, but that can price their products out of the market for small practices.

E-MDs began developing its own database for drug reference and interactions about five years ago as a way to hold down the cost of its EMR. 

With an open-source product, users can provide feedback via a public website to help keep the database updated and accurate as new drugs and scientific research become available. 

Neil Versel writes for Health-IT World

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