Helping patients manage diabetes with a secure health information solution

A local registration and access system with multi-tiered security is integrated into a system located in a different country, enabling patients to store health information securely via the web, contributing to the client’s marketing and patient care programs.

Business need

A complex array of information was to be collected from Australian diabetes sufferers along with a unique identifier. This identifier was then be used to link the user into an existing health information system located in the US, which allows users and their physicians to store and monitor their diabetes management information on the web using an interface to their PC from their blood glucose meter.

Key challenges

  • A complex system with multiple secure interfaces between remote applications and data sources
  • Security was paramount because dealing with personal health information
  • Design the system so it was portable for different hosting environments

Solution

A multi-tiered security system was developed, with keys for user access encrypted with state of the art symmetric encryption. Users register over the web with an annual fee paid via credit card. Users are mailed automatically if subscriptions are about to expire. There are multilevel context sensitive help pages to assist users and several context-sensitive contacts to help non technical customers use the website.

The Australian database is used for managing the relationship between the client and its customers by allowing email newsletters to be sent and an easy link between a username and their contact data. The security means that not even the Australian staff can link this user information to the health information stored in the USA.

Results

Diabetes patients have a private way to help them manage their disease, and the client has integrated the system into their marketing activity.  An innovative solution was developed addressing both legal and technical issues. The system has run successfully for a number of years, been extended several times, and has been transferred successfully twice to different hosting facilities without major disruption.

Customer information

Roche Diagnostics is part of a major international health care group, ranking among the top ten pharmaceutical companies in the world and is known for many innovative contributions to medicine.