Scrolling through open source news today, I found a Market Watch release about open source e-pharmacy software. Different groups within the health care industry have taken an open source approach to software, so it's no surprise to see it in pharma also. However, I'm always a little skeptical when I see a press release trumpeting a particular solution as open source.
First, open source is mainstream enough now that the fact that a particular product resulted from an open source development model isn't really news anymore. Secondly, for awhile there, companies were using the open source label rather loosely. Needless to say, the first thing I did was check the company Web site to see just how open source this pharmacy management system is.
The Open Source Initiative's stand on the label issue did make a difference, apparently, because the site links directly to the OSI home page, and it is immediately clear that ePostRx is a GPL licensed solution that will be coupled with commercial support. If that's not enough, the site says "ANSI Health will customize a contract" just for you. The site also includes a wealth of imformation for developers, from source tree to documentation library to a developer agreement and various other necessities.