OpenMRS Implementer’s Meeting 2019: Strengthening and Harmonizing the OpenMRS Ecosystem

From hackathon sessions focused on expanding OpenMRS developers’ skills to apply new microservice technologies to discussions on OpenMRS implementation successes and challenges, 2019’s OpenMRS Implementer’s Meeting in Maputo, Mozambique offered opportunities for 170 people from 22 countries to explore ways to strengthen and harmonize the OpenMRS ecosystem. 

Attendees from 22 countries began arriving on December 1 for the two-day hackathon, which preceded the three-day meeting. The hackathon featured multiple challenges, from Mozambique and Uganda priority use cases and issues to OpenMRS/Bahmni data exchange with OpenIMIS to FHIR. OpenMRS developers interested in becoming familiar with microfrontends and Single-SPA, the new technologies behind the new OpenMRS front-end initiative, took advantage of learning sessions offered by OpenMRS Microfrontend Squad members. 

“Marvelous!” “Essential” “Amazing!” and “Collaborative” were among the words attendees said they would use to describe their OMRS19 experience. Almost 75% of those surveyed thought that a great deal or a lot of time was spent on important information at OMRS19. Another 90% thought that information shared at the conference was quite or extremely useful. Participants shared that they particularly liked the opportunity to network and share knowledge, with one participant calling out the “critical updates on many projects and opportunities to develop collaborations.” 

Happening during the last month of 2019, attendees left the Implementer’s Meeting inspired and energized, with multiple ideas for action in 2020 emerging. As early as the opening ceremony, attendees heard Professor Orlando Quilambo, Rector of the Universidade Eduardo Mondlane (UEM), express UEM’s “intention to collaborate with the OpenMRS Community in the creation of the OpenMRS Academy to professionalize and strengthen the capacity of the local OpenMRS community.” A Birds of a Feather group served as the launching pad for the OCL for OpenMRS squad. And our final after action review captured priorities that attendees intend to work on in 2020. Over the next month, we’ll be referring back to these suggestions to inform our operational plan and act on in the new year.

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