Response to Pharmacy Practice Software Systems (PPMS) COVID-19 Update Inquiry (Canada)

MEDITECH is committed to working with our customers during this unprecedented challenge to the medical community. We were recently made aware of a regulatory change by Health Canada to enable pharmacists to better help their patients during the COVID-19 health emergency. It’s come to our attention that pharmacists will need to adapt by transferring and extending prescriptions for controlled substances or accepting verbal prescriptions for controlled substances.

MEDITECH’s Pharmacy solution is not restrictive or lacking the flexibility to accommodate these new provisions.

If you have any questions please feel free to reach out to your MEDITECH Pharmacy Application Specialist.

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from Information Technology Association of Canada https://itac.ca/blog/response-to-pharmacy-practice-software-systems-ppms-covid-19-update-inquiry-canada/…

Being on the Safe Side of Being Online

Oh, the world wide web, how fascinating our lives have been with it! It has opened is to a whole new dimension of information we have no access to before. But then, just like any other place that’s worth exploring, there may be dangers that lurk on the sides that if you fall victim to, will damage your entire experience. So, you need to be aware of these hazards and keep yourself safe when surfing online. What’s great is that you don’t really need to be a computer science genius to know how to amply protect yourself when exploring the internet. Minimize your risk by taking note of these tips to enjoy a safer web experience.

The Importance of Upgrading

Let’s admit it: Most, if not all of us, get annoyed when programs in our computer get upgraded without our permission. These silent upgrades are not done for no reason, though, as they play a key role in keeping everyone safe. Moreover, browsers and OSes have made it point to roll out their updates in a seamless fashion, making it a point to not bother users. It would be best to apply these updates on all applications and programs, not just on your browser or frequently used programs. Don’t allow old versions of programs to be left in your machine, as they are susceptible to attacks, not to mention that they may soon (or may have already) be without support.

Silent upgrades might occasionally be annoying (and costly), but they’re a big part of keeping you safe, which is why the updates for most OSes and browsers now happen seamlessly. Apply updates whenever you’re asked to on all your applications, not just your browser, and be wary of leaving older hardware gathering dust on your network.

Viruses and malware are constantly evolving to exploit vulnerabilities in your software and hardware. Software developers try to fix these flaws as soon as they are discovered. What many people don’t realise is that infections occur because people delay software updates that fix these

MEDITECH PROVIDES DECISION SUPPORT AND GUIDANCE FOR CORONAVIRUS (UPDATED)

March 24, 2020 | Expanse Updates , Physician,  Press ReleasesSolutions

In response to updated recommendations from the CDC and WHO, MEDITECH has updated its Guidance Documents  on how organizations can build, implement, and deploy new functionality that can help deal with the demands of the COVID-19 crisis. This information has been added to MEDITECH’s previously released guidance, including EHR screening protocols that have already been adopted by several healthcare organizations.

The Guidance Documents  outline how the MEDITECH EHR and integrated technologies help organizations to:

  • Communicate with patients and consumers.

  • Provide virtual care.

  • Identify at-risk patients in acute, ambulatory, and home care settings.

  • Track patients entering facilities.

  • Alert care providers of at-risk patients.

  • Manage the drive-thru processes.

  • Survey the community.

  • Analyze COVID-19 related data.

  • Implement remote monitoring of patients who need vital check-ins.

  • Use new COVID-19 terminology documentation templates, lab tests, and EMR IDs.

A robust section on Virtual Care highlights how your organization can use the component to prevent an influx of patients from crowding waiting rooms to help reduce the spread of the virus. MEDITECH’s Ambulatory Virtual Visit solution can support the screening, early detection, and management of patients potentially infected with COVID-19. Virtual Visits enable staff to screen and treat patients safely, and to direct them to appropriate locations for testing. Guidance is provided below to help organizations more quickly roll out the use of virtual services.

“Expanse is remarkable in the way that our staff was quickly able to make changes to our typical intake and triage process, and create an integrated screening process that is in line with the latest CDC recommendations in this rapidly evolving epidemic,” said ED Medical Director Louis Dandurand, MD, of Northwestern Medical Center (St. Albans, VT).

MEDITECH strongly advises healthcare providers to review and follow either CDC or WHO guidance to create processes and protocols for proper COVID-19 management. Please continue to monitor the CDC and/or WHO

Invitation to Canada’s tech industry to respond to government questions around how the sector is impacted by COVID-19; A short survey

March 24, 2020 

To all our TECHNATION Members – With the past few weeks of the rapidly increasing COVID-19 crisis, it is becoming very clear that TECHNATION has a critical role to play in coordinating communication and input for both our members and for our government stakeholders.
 First and foremost, the challenges posed by this crisis: Senior officials from both the Government of Canada and the Ontario Government have asked for input on how the Canadian tech sector is coping during this crisis. Specifically, we are seeking information about how the global health crisis is affecting your business and how governments across the country can better support our industry through this time. You have an opportunity to provide specific feedback as to mechanisms and actions the government can /must take to support your company and unforeseen challenges at this very difficult time.
 Secondly – opportunity amidst this crisis: A number of you have reached out with respect to your technology, ability, and willingness to provide support to government during this crisis. We want to highlight your company’s technology value – that could or should be deployed by the government in support of the current crisis. You may have the capability to provide customized Ai solutions and predictive analytics, health care supply chain visibility, resource optimization, or the ability to rapidly develop customized government service applications. We want to share it all and ensure government leaders have the knowledge and insight visibility they needed for agile and rapid decision making.
 With the above in mind, TECHNATION has developed a simple ‘Technology Innovation Hub’ for GOV Crisis Management. In essence, this tool will provide a ‘business to government’ market database – where we can provide visibility to any level of government, current technology solutions and future crisis capability of our members’ technology!
 We currently have an ongoing dialogue with the Government of Canada, the Government of Ontario and Municipalities, including the Health Canada, Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada (ISED), Shared Services Canada, Global Affairs Canada, the Department of Finance Canada,

COVID 19 & Cybersecurity Vigilance

In the midst of this novel coronavirus pandemic, we are coming together as a nation to ‘flatten the curve’ by exercising better personal hygiene and social distancing. During this crisis, Canadians and Canadian businesses have embraced technology to stay better connected, adopt alternative work arrangements, and move business activities online. We are seeing technology used more than ever and there are hundreds of information and communications technology (ICT) companies and thousands of workers that are assisting in the national response, keeping us connected and helping keep the economy moving.

Unfortunately, during crises like these, opportunistic cyber attacks increase and, in this case, the Canadian Centre for Cyber Security has noted an increase in healthcare related phishing and malware scams. Such attacks seek to take advantage of both human and system weaknesses during the crisis and cause even further damage and disruption. Cybersecurity teams from all levels of government and the ICT industry are taking additional actions to protect Canadians and Canadian businesses. To help, we should all be vigilant and take some basic steps to keep ourselves and our businesses safe and secure online:

  1. Make sure that you have activated your security products (firewall, anti-virus, intrusion detection, etc.). Many of these products are free or available at low cost.
  2. Ensure that your operating system is up-to-date and patched. Don’t give threat actors an open door to your systems.
  3. Use strong passwords, and where possible, use encryption and/or multi-factor authentication when engaged in exchange of sensitive information or in financial transactions. There are many trusted online references on these topics.
  4. Understand what you need to protect (systems, devices, data) and how it should be protected. If you’re not sure talk to your cybersecurity or IT service provider.
  5. Ensure that you regularly ‘back up’ your critical data in a separate location from your current system. If you don’t have a lot of data, you can do this on a USB, external hard drive or DVD. However, if you have more data, you can leverage Cloud services or discuss your requirements with

How Technology Has Affected the Modern Workplace

Throughout history, technology has continuously modified the way employees across every industry do their work. Not long ago, companies were in the mess of numerous paperwork. Heavy expenses were incurred so as to reach customers, memos had to be released and posted on notice boards, as well as numerous meetings in rooms.

Nevertheless, technology has changed all of this and made work more comfortable. You now stand a chance to work in the comfort of your home effectively. Here are some of the ways in which technology has reshaped the modern workplace. 

1. Speed and Efficiency

Technology has made it possible for you to work faster and become more fruitful when working from home. Using modern software systems not only motivates you to do more work but also do a clean job. Unlike in the past, when you had to do a lot of paperwork, completing a task is now just a click away. 

Technology has streamlined how fast a certain task will be completed. It has become easy to track down how your colleagues are working and bring out better results together. Therefore, the ability to bring out fast and efficient results lies on the screen in front of you. 

2. Better Team Collaboration

Technology has dramatically changed the way people used to communicate. Smartphones, chat apps, and social networking sites have taken communication to another level. This makes it easy to get in touch with your colleagues and deliberate on how you can continue being more productive. 

Technology has also made it easier for managers to track the progress of every employee. This keeps every worker on their toes and ensures that all work is efficiently done and thus more output. Holding meetings has also become easy due to teleconferencing. This saves you not only time but also the extra expenses that would have been used to commute to the office.

3. Reduced Risk of Security Breaches

Initially stealing essential and sensitive information from a company was easy, but now with technology, it has almost become impossible to …

TECHNATION applauds Government of Ontario decision to include IT and IT infrastructure as an essential service; and recommend other provinces follow-suit 

OTTAWA, ON (March 24, 2020) –  In an effort to stimulate physical distancing and self-isolation measures, the Government of Ontario yesterday ordered the closure of all non-essential businesses in response to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis 

TECHNATION strongly believes that IT and IT infrastructure serve a critical role across Ontario, and around the world As providers of IT and IT infrastructure supporting health care efforts, first responders, medical researchers and the vast population in self-isolation, our members strongly recommended to our governments that IT be considered an essential service Businesses and government rely on videoconferencing and remote connectivity to facilitate their work and to ensure the continued employment of staff.  In addition, families are depending on online services to teach their children and to communicate with loved ones, including at risk seniors in isolation.  

As such, TECHNATION supports the Government’s choice to include in its list of essential services, the following: 

Telecommunications and IT Infrastructure/Service Providers 

  1. Businesses engaged in providing or supporting Information Technology (IT) including online services, software products and related services, as well as the technical facilities such as data centres and other network facilities necessary for their operation and delivery; 
  1. Businesses providing telecommunications services (phone, internet, radio, cell phones etc) as well as support facilities such as call centres necessary for their operation and delivery.

By including telecommunications and IT infrastructure/service providers in this list of essential workplaces, the Government of Ontario has demonstrated its commitment to bold steps to fight the COVID-19 crisis in conjunction with the private sector.  

TECHNATION implores all other governments across Canada to follow the lead of the province of Ontario in recognizing the invaluable role telecommunications and IT infrastructure/service providers play in the fight against COVID-19. 

Quotes 

“On behalf of our members – Canada’s technology leaders and innovators – I thank the Government of Ontario for its leadership. By including telecommunications and IT infrastructure and service providers in its list of essential services, the Government has demonstrated a clear

Free Your Phone by Unlocking It

Let’s admit it: Not all of us can buy a phone outright. We would need to save and penny-pinch on some unnecessary expenses for months just to gather enough cash. By the time we have saved enough, it would be most likely that the phone we are eyeing to buy is already not the latest. Thus, it makes sense for most of us to rely on a monthly contract with a carrier to make the phone’s cost more manageable, not to mention you can get the phone the moment you sign the contract. But then, once the contract period is over, you may already legally own the phone, but do you still want to carry on with your carrier? There may be plans with better value on other carriers, so you may want to use your phone when you make that switch.

Of course, the biggest hindrance to your plans is that more often than not, phones that are given through contracts are locked to the carrier. After all, phone locking is a way for carriers to maintain their hold on their customers and prevent them from using the phone they acquired with their contracts to other carriers. However, recent legislation has made it easier and legal for phone unlocking to be done. Finally, not just because it has become easier and legal does not mean that you can DIY yourself through the process.

T-Mobile

Should you bother to unlock your T-Mobile phone? Yes, because they are GSM-based. This means that an unlocked T-Mobile phone can be used with other international carriers, including AT&T.

T-Mobile makes it pretty easy to unlock your phone, but there are just a couple things you need to do first.

(Via: https://www.androidguys.com/guides/how-to-unlock-your-t-mobile-phone/)

 

Sprint

An unlocked Sprint phone can be used as a prepaid phone and can also be used in mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) brands like Net10, Twigby, and Boost Mobile, among others.

For postpaid customers with SIM unlock-capable devices, Sprint has chosen to simply unlock active eligible SIM unlock-capable devices without

Augmented Reality using ArUco Markers in OpenCV (C++ / Python)

In this post, we will explain what ArUco markers are and how to use them for simple augmented reality tasks using OpenCV. ArUco markers have been used for a while in augmented reality, camera pose estimation, and camera calibration. Let’s learn more about them. What are ArUco markers? ArUco markers were originally developed in 2014 […]

from Learn OpenCV https://www.learnopencv.com/augmented-reality-using-aruco-markers-in-opencv-c-python/…

The Inclusion of the ICT Sector as an Essential Service

March 20, 2020

ATTN: The Honourable Bill Blair, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness

Re: The Inclusion of the ICT Sector as an Essential Service

Dear Minister Blair,

On behalf of TECHNATION, the national industry association of the information technology (IT) sector in Canada, and its members, I wanted to take a moment to reach out to you personally to commend the leadership shown thus far in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and the necessary and quick reactions by all levels of government.

The threat posed by COVID-19 has necessitated an unprecedented government response in order to ensure the safety of Canadians. Should the measures under your consideration potentially include emergency or shelter-in-place measures, I respectfully request that you include the vital functions performed by information technology, IT infrastructure, and delivery and transportation services as essential business exemptions.

We write with three requests: (1) IT services and IT infrastructure must be deemed essential in the case of emergency or shelter-in-place orders; (2) designated IT professionals must be exempt from international travel limitations; and (3) fulfillment and delivery services must be essential business exemptions in an emergency or shelter-in-place order.

IT and IT infrastructure serve a critical role across Canada through supporting the efforts of health care providers, first responders, medical researchers. Businesses and governments rely on videoconferencing and remote connectivity to facilitate their work and to ensure the continued employment of staff. Families depend on online services to teach their children and to communicate with loved ones.

Any material disruption to or closure of significant IT operations could severely impact our industry’s ability to support these critical endeavours. To ensure the continuity, stability, and security of these services, any emergency or shelter-in-place orders must designate IT services and IT infrastructure as essential.

Further, IT professionals must also be included within exemptions to travel limitation. IT professionals outside of Canada must be allowed to enter the country to perform critical maintenance and servicing of IT infrastructure and networks. In order to keep Canada’s digital infrastructure connected and secure, IT professionals …