Summarizing drug orders into treatment regimens

For certain chronic diseases it seems to me that certain medicines are given together. I have also seen this in Cancer. I think these are called treatment regimens. (I don’t understand medicine so I may be wrong). From a usability standpoint it would be great if we could summarise a series of drug orders over multiple visits into treatment regimens (group of medicines taken over a period of time). Currently there is no way to do this in OpenMRS. The order-extension module allows for creating template of this, but there is no way to store this against the actual drug orders.

I am wondering whether it should be supported by OpenMRS core?

@vsingh, you’re correct, these are typically referred to as a medication regimen. We have designed these as:

  • order set – a collection of order templates and/or other order sets. The order set model was designed to be metadata to define any combination of orders & commentary, including included commentary/guidance, the ability to dynamically change based on context, etc. In more complicated cases, an order set could represent a standard treatment plan for a particular condition. In the simplest case, an order set can simply represent a group of medications that are ordered together (the regimen you mention).

  • order group – a collection of orders that were placed together. Typically, the order group would be used to track when orders were ordered together through an order set, but groups could be used to record that orders were ordered together for any reason (e.g., even if hard-coded in an form or application). The order group is data (not metadata) to record the linkage between orders that were ordered as a group.

In prior dev calls, implementations suggested that implementing order groups (i.e., being able to record that orders were placed together) was higher priority than order sets, since order sets can be hardcoded or managed via other workarounds before they are formally realized within OpenMRS.

Much of this has been discussed & rediscussed over the years, but not yet implemented. You can get some more detail about our design ideas from this wiki page.

And to be explicit: we would love to have someone implement order_group, and we’d be thrilled to get this into openmrs-core.

But it will be in version 1.12; this is a big feature, and those aren’t backported to prior release lines. This could also be a good opportunity to test-drive the model of making one important change to openmrs-core quickly, and then releasing it fast rather than slow.

I think it’s also possible that this could be implemented in an add-on module in such a way that the underlying Java code is awkward, but the REST API is clean.

thanks. i think the solution described as order_groups would do. as always, it will sometime. i can go back to clients that this should be possible.