The System Development Life Cycle

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As with any system design and implementation, it’s imperative to follow the tried and true methodology of the system development life cycle (SDLC). Adherence to the SDLC sets the stage for successful systems from design to death. In addition, key points during the life cycle of the system are addressed and not overlooked. Of utmost importance with an electronic health record (EHR) system, amongst many other systems, is security. During the initiation phase of an EHR, it’s imperative to keep security at the forefront of discussions. There is actually quite a bit of resources that need dedicated to the needs of security at this point. The facility information security officer and key stakeholders should be engaged early on in the discussion of an EHR system. This will ensure appropriate focus on not only institutional security policies related to healthcare data, but also at state and federal regulations aimed at safeguarding healthcare data and the systems that contain it. In addition, at this phase it’s imperative to discuss the what the business impact to the organization would be should the system be compromised and/or suffer catastrophic failure, so that recovery plans and options can begin to be visualized. This is the common goal of a business impact analysis and disaster recovery review. Another key point of focus during the initiation phase would be to look towards the development of the system with regards to infrastructure needs to maintain privacy and
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