IT Innovation Contest

A team-based contest for creative IT solutions

IT Innovation – Mobile Platform for Electronic Capture of Patient Reported Information, The UCSF Athena Breast Health Network – Mobile Devices,,iPad & Web Solution

Proposal Status: 

Project Title: Mobile Platform for Electronic Capture of Patient Reported Information, The UCSF Athena Breast Health Network 


We propose to develop a robust mobile platform for electronic capture of patient reported health history information as a catalyst to improve, accelerate and personalize clinical care and research. The prototype will be developed for the intake of breast health history information but designed to allow easy interoperability, “plug and play”.


Patient reported information or “health history intake forms” coupled with clinical examinations have been an essential component of a patients diagnostic and treatment plan. Historically, the method for capturing this information has been paper. In this age of technology, healthcare IT is quickly being left behind with its use of paper-recorded data.

 Advantages to the Athena mobile platform for electronic capture of patient reported information include but are not limited to the following functions


  • Structured and computable data elements
  • Paper-reduction and reduced patient burden
  • Dynamic and improved usability and graphical user interface
  • Information and data entered and stored via Multiple  diverse Mobile devices

 Structured and computable data elements

Clinical data is too often not stored as searchable and structured data elements. The Athena Mobile Platform will facilitate structured data capture, enabling quality measurement and offering capability for integration with value-added tools including real-time and individualized risk assessment, clinical decision support models and automated clinical referrals to aid in the prevention of disease. The structured data will allow for improved accuracy and efficiency of reporting of information to national databases and forums and accelerates research by facilitating the ability to analyze discrete data elements and formulate multi-variable analytics that will in turn, inform and improve clinical care.

Paper-reduction and reduced patient burden

In general healthcare and Electronic Health Records (EHRs) the problem list is a valued tool for care and research with the accuracy and quality of data being of vital importance. Patient reported health history data has been found to be an adequate source of information. This was proven in a study done in a health centre in Diemen-Zuid, a suburb of Amsterdam in the Netherlands where 62% of patient reported problems were found to be significant and were not documented by general practitioners.[i] Currently, a large portion of patient reported health information is not being recorded accurately. The Athena Mobile Platform will optimize collection and utilization of patient reported clinical information, offering the functionality to integrate discrete data into the EHR. This reduces the need for “human-bridging” and data entry and increases the accuracy of patient reported healthcare data.

 The platform not only captures discrete data but also bridges the gap of information sharing across interdisciplinary systems and departments, thereby reducing patient burden. This will allow patients to only enter their health history data once, across interdisciplinary fields also allowing for updates and quality checks.

Dynamic and improved usability

The Athena Mobile Platform will improve usability and personalize the patient experience by being able to cater to diverse audiences with a broad range of user interface graphical “motifs”, multi-language functionality, educational text and support complex questioning with intelligent branching logic. The platform can be adapted to meet the needs of various specialties with the “plug and play” model.

 Impact on UCSF Mission and / or community:

The University of California, San Francisco is a leader in facilitating an atmosphere of rapid scientific discovery that accelerates the need for technical innovation and impacts the delivery of clinical care. The Athena Mobile Platform for capture of patient reported information at UCSF can serve as a catalyst and multi-disciplinary model for UC-wide collaboration through standardized data collection and evidence based knowledge turns, provide improved patient-centered and personalized care by offering real-time interface capability with value-added tools including real-time decision support and risk assessment models that can cater to diverse populations and literacy levels.







  • Athena HQS Screening Questionnaire
  • OAuth Secure Access
  • Authentication
  • Mobile device delivery includes the following:
    • iPAD
    • iPhone - Apple Mobile Phone
    • Android
  • Questions will be associated with graphical images – icons to satisfy low literacy participants
  • Questionnaire data will be stored in a  Force database
  • Leveraging Mobile devices and ipad technology to allow participants and patients to provide data and information about their health, insights, diagnosis and recovery in a secure environment across the network and  can be utilized by other UC’s (UC Irvine, UC Davis, UC San Diego and UCLA) in addition to  UCSF
  • Provide ability and functionality on the mobile device to captured data  that can be Integrated /Interfaced from the force platform to APeX and potentially back to the Force platform
  • Provide Multi-language communication and interfaces between data collection, participant involvement, and data retrieval - Spanish
  • Instant risk assessment
  • HTML5 and Javascript hybrid model



Team Members :

 Alexander Solomon, UCSF Business / program representative, User, QA, GUI

 Terri Spencer,  UCSF, PMO-IT, lead, technologist, PM, QA

 Kymberly Bartlo, UCSF-IT  Developer, QA, Buildmaster

 Lana Milter, UCSF-IT Developer, QA, GUI


  • Members are from UCSF, UCSF ITS, Athena PMO,
  • Cross UCSF collaboration and synergy



[i] Lauteslager M, Brouwer HJ, Mohrs J, Bindels PJE and Grundmeijer HGLM. The patient as a source to improve the medical record. Family Practice 2002; 19: 167–171


Capturing structured data from patients with the ability to upload to Apex would be a huge boon, and would help streamline patient intake procedures as the information could be captured ahead of the appointment time. If this comes to fruition and is in use, perhaps it would afford the opportunity to standardize the various patient forms that are in use at UCSF and avoid multiple reporting of the same information by patients (certainly a patient frustration every time the same information is collected yet again).

Thank you for your comment Enrique. We agree, the potential standardization with a validation method would certainly help to alleviate a lot of patient frustration and clinic wait times.

Enrique. Fortunately the Athena & Medical Center Senior leadership is currently finalizing the requirements for the Apex integration, with the target implementation 4th quarter (Oct - Dec) 2012. Having the opportunity to implement this initiative -to create the Mobile front end patient intake by October 2012, and immediately implementing the Apex integration 4th quarter, an operational end to end solution could be implemented by Dec 2012. This model would benefit UCSF immensely and would accommodate more than 2,000 people

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