jueves, 2 de febrero de 2012

QR codes in GNU Health

QR (Quick Response) codes are great, versatile matrix-encoded graphs. Unlike traditional bar codes, they allow to store a lot more information and can be read from most mobile devices.

GNU Health, the Free Health and Hospital Information System now supports QR codes, which will have many uses. To name a few :

  • Patient identification
  • Newborn identification and wristband
  • Electronic prescriptions
  • Health promotion and disease prevention
  • Health center Inventory control

So, anyone with a camera enabled tablet, game console or cell phone can read QR codes. This generates a great scenario for Health promotion. 

We now can have posters in health centers or schools , providing the guidelines for prevention of obesity, diabetes, tuberculosis, HIV, teenage pregnancy, etcetera, all of them with  the proper links with the proper links  so they can be read at home. They can be shared among friends or social networks.

Here is a small demo that you can scan with your favorite QR reader. 


In GNU Health, we have found that all the items enumerated above will help all parties. From the social worker, the health professional, the patient, the families and the ministry of health.

Example on how GNU Health encodes newborn information using QR codes 


There are many applications in the social and medical fields that we can encode in this format, so please give us your feedback and we'll be happy to incorporate it !

We fight for equality in health care, and incorporating QR codes into GNU Health is just one more step forward.

About GNU Health

GNU Health is a free Health and Hospital Information System that provides the following functionality :

  • Electronic Medical Record (EMR)
  • Hospital Information System (HIS)
  • Health Information System

GNU Health is an official GNU Package and is part of GNU Solidario. GNU Solidario is a NGO that delivers education and health to emerging economies with free software.

GNU Health is the Hospital Information System chosen by the United Nations International Institute of Global Health. 

Main site : health.gnu.org

Governments hosting GNU Health through their portals :
  • European Commission (EU) , OSOR
  • Brazil: Portal do Software Público Brasileiro (SPB)