The client is a Texan surgeon with 25+ years of practical experience. He wanted to develop a mobile app to reduce manual paperwork for surgeons. The app had to help update patient data and case details by scanning information on paper labels.
The app needed to support optical character recognition (OCR) technology and comply with HIPAA security regulations.
The mobile case logger, when compared to manual recording, is:
Faster: the user adds a new medical case in just three button clicks.
Safer: the app stores all the data locally on the device and synchronizes it with the Amazon S3 cloud on demand. The Amazon Web Services Infrastructure puts strong safeguards in place to help protect customer privacy. All data is stored in highly secure AWS data centers.
More convenient: the case log is always at hand, in the user's phone.
More secure: to get access to the database, the user needs to go through a multistep authorization process, including biometric authentication.
The back end combines the interrelated Amazon Cognito and S3 services to enable authentication, data backup, and advanced information security.
Digital medical solutions have to comply with HIPAA Security Rules, establishing security standards for the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of electronic protected health information (ePHI). To address these requirements, Softeq created a security system that included the following protection layers:
Data protection layer:
The client specified that the most important features of the app were the accuracy of data recognition and patient information security—meeting HIPAA requirements. Therefore, Softeq paid special attention to implementing the OCR algorithms and security system.
Softeq analyzed the following OCR libraries and compared them against the criteria of ownership cost, quality of recognition, compatibility with required platforms, and offline mode availability:
Tesseract OCR happened to be the first choice for this project due to its offline-access mode, compatibility with all the required platforms, and free-to-use status.
OCR’s performance heavily depends on the brightness uniformity, contrast, and resolution of the scanned photo. To meet the required parameters, the image must be processed by the following algorithms and filters, integrated into the app’s custom layer, created by Softeq:
Softeq created a fully functional mobile case logger for professional surgeons, meeting medical industry standards, including HIPAA Security Rules on patient data protection. The Surgeon App allows users to collect and update patient data in a few clicks via OCR and be sure that this sensitive information is well protected from loss or theft by the AWS-based back end and secure authentication system.