Recording a Person without a Person Name

Hi guys!

As part of MF-192: Record Patient Name, we come across the UNKOWN patient case.

In the Ref App, when the Unidentified patient box is clicked, it will create a Person Name of UNKNOWN, UNKNOWN.

And that seems to be used as a keyword for the UI to identify unidentified patients, since the UI conditionally displays a message when the patient is named UNKNOWN, UNKNOWN:

Would it make sense to instead record an unknown/unidentified patient as a Person with no Person Name at all?

Currently this seems not possible, the backend says that a Person Name is required. (Person Name and Gender are the only 2 required fields to record a Person)



(cc: @ruhanga, @ddesimone, @nickjhill )

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Looks like the rule is that “a non-voided person must have at least one non-voided name” (see here). This was not always there, it was introduced in Core 1.10.0 here with this commit message:

Responding to review comments for: Implement voiding of PersonNames - TRUNK-2198

I haven’t looked at the conversation between @darius and @dkayiwa on the ticket but it may provide clues as to why this decision was taken to disallow person without person names.

@dkayiwa do you remember?

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Is that because UNKNOWN, UNKNOWN looks ugly? :slight_smile:

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Haha, it is indeed. Sounds too much like a workaround where user must input something in a mandatory field while in fact there is nothing to enter.

UNKNOWN is not the name of the patient :smiley:

This feature would be extremely helpful in unidentified, unconscious non-ambulatory patients coming in the Emergency department. The feature would be complete if the users can enable it for select visit types.

@akhilmalhotra1, the feature itself is already there in Ref App, via the “UNKNOWN” name as described above. I don’t think it supports being conditional to the Visit Type though. That’s a good improvement idea.

In my post I am more referring to the way it is recorded, ie, using a placeholder string of “UNKNOWN”.

If you mean to having this in Bahmni and not the Ref App, then I think that would be an easy fix to add the change in Bahmni Apps.

Thanks @mksrom - I’d be worried about not having a person_name entry at all. Even aside from the rule that @mksd mentioned, who knows what other processes exist that depend on that row being there? For example, I’m sure at PIH we have some reports that do an inner join on that table.

Maybe the correct solution (which I’m not suggesting needs to be done now) would be to build in an “unidentified patient” flag on the person_name table? So there would always be a row there but without the hacky “unknown/unknown”. We would just need to go through to see everything that is keying off of that.

And yes, @akhilmalhotra1 , being able to register a patient without collecting name and other details is definitely useful in emergency situations!


Not only though, from a business standpoint it makes more sense to not attach any name to a patient if we happen to not know any for that patient. A truly anonymous/unnamed/unknown patient would be such that names is null or empty.

But as @ddesimone said, it’s probably too late to impose this on existing databases out there.

Yup. It would be great to have this feature in Bahmni.