Dear Friends of OSEHRA,
Last week, we launched the OSEHRA web site and posted an initial set of documents covering everything from how membership works to our draft plans for technical operations such as the certification process and our code repository design. We appreciate the comments that we've received so far and we encourage your feedback and discussion. Your input is a valuable part of the process of designing OSEHRA's operations.
We noted that many of the initial comments and suggestions are related to membership. It is critically important that we create a community where individuals and organizations feel comfortable participating and contributing, and we are actively working on updates to incorporate the feedback you've given us. We can address a few significant points right away:
Charging a fee for individual membership has created an impression that developers must pay for the right to contribute. This was not our intent! Based on community feedback, however, we plan to restructure membership so that anyone can participate in discussions and make contributions without membership or fees. Membership (including a $35 fee for individuals) will be required in order to vote on OSEHRA governance matters, such as the election of board members. (Note that membership fees will not be charged before the end of this calendar year.)
The confidentiality portion of the membership agreement raised a number of comments and questions. We're working on simplifying this agreement, particularly for individuals, so that no one is discouraged from joining the community because of the complexity of the membership agreement. Look for details of our updated membership structure in the near future.
We've also received a number of comments on Licensing. This is a cornerstone of any open source community and a topic that warrants discussion. We'll be providing comments, answers, and updates to your remarks soon.
We encourage your review and comment on our plans for code repository design and the certification process. We are working hard to put the first versions of each in place and welcome your feedback.
OSEHRA strives to be an effective and trusted facilitator of innovation in open source EHRs. This work is an engine for improving the care of warriors, family members, Americans and friends around the world. We welcome your comments, suggestions and participation.
On behalf of the OSEHRA team, I thank you for your continuing support.
Seong K. Mun, PhD
Acting President and CEO
900 North Glebe Road, Arlington, VA 22203