HELP: A Medical Information System with Decision Making Capability
HELP is a medical information system which is routinely used to collect and review patient data, to provide financial, administrative and management information and to produce computer generated medical decisions. Although the HELP system was developed at the LDS Hospital and University of Utah in Salt Lake City, it has now been successfully transported to other institutions. The system (see figure) consists of three main components: 1. A comprehensive clinical database for all patients in the hospital. 2. A separate, modular medical knowledge base which contains criteria necessary to make specific medical decisions (alerts, interpretations, diagnoses, or therapeutic suggestions). 3. The HELP interpreter. This module provides the control function to decide which logic modules should get evaluated and then evaluates the appropriate medical logic. In the following sections, each of these coirponents will be described in greater detail.
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