Solutions

Eyes on Technology

United States Eye Injury Registry

The human eye is a delicate, vital organ — and repairing damage to it can often challenge the limits of medical science. Ophthalmologist — those surgeons who specialize in treatment of eye injuries — must constantly stay abreast of new developments and techniques to keep their skills finely honed. The United States Eye Injury Registry helps bring doctors this type of information — through a nationwide data pool managed with FileMaker Pro, the award–winning database software application from FileMaker Inc.

Overview

  • Sharpening the focus on treatment of severe eye injuries, the United States Eye Injury Registry powers its database for access anywhere with FileMaker Pro.

Industry

  • Healthcare/Medical Services
  • Information Technology

Switching to a customized FileMaker Pro database allowed a revolutionary change in the organization.

— Dr. Ferenc Kuhn, President, United States Eye Injury Registry

Business Challenge

Based in Birmingham, Alabama, the United States Eye Injury Registry collects and documents information on serious eye injuries, how they occur and how they are treated. It's a joint venture of the American Society of Ocular Trauma and the Helen Keller Foundation for Research and Education, sponsoring the collection of data from treating ophthalmologists using a standardized reporting form. "The information is confidential and undergoes a rigorous quality control process before it is entered into the database," comments USEIR President, Dr. Ferenc Kuhn.

Until the USEIR began in 1988, there was no source for comprehensive data on the epidemiology of eye injuries — and in its earliest form, the database was rather primitive. "Originally, data were gathered on paper forms, which were filled out and then mailed to individual state registry offices," Dr. Kuhn relates. "The information was then entered into a customized dBase data set. Later, floppy or Zip discs were mailed to the central office in Birmingham for bulk entry. The most serious limits to the effective operation of the USEIR was the use of dBase and the use of mechanical media."

Successful Solution

Eight years ago, the USEIR made the move to FileMaker Pro — and FileMaker's been the foundation of the system ever since. "Switching to a customized FileMaker Pro database allowed a revolutionary change in the organization," enthuses Dr. Kuhn. "The software is easy to learn and use, allows cross–platform operation, and allowed us to shift from reporting via mechanical media and standard mail to instantaneous reporting from any location through the Internet. It also allows most of the quality control processes to be performed automatically by the software instead of requiring highly trained personnel to screen each report by hand. Reporting in a standardized fashion is now possible from anywhere around the world."

FileMaker Pro and a development grant from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), allowed us to design a system we call the OTS, or Ocular Trauma Score. This allows a treating ophthalmologist to predict early the likely outcome of the injury. For the first time in history, this allows accurate patient counseling and early planning for rehabilitation.

— Dr. Ferenc Kuhn, President, United States Eye Injury Registry

Now, using FileMaker Pro Unlimited, the USEIR system comprises 10 databases containing a total of more than 13,000 records. And the system is more than just a reference resource — it's a proactive tool helping doctors plan effective prevention and treatment strategies. "FileMaker Pro and a development grant from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), allowed us to design a system we call the OTS, or Ocular Trauma Score," continues Dr. Kuhn. "This allows a treating ophthalmologist to predict early the likely outcome of the injury. For the first time in history, this allows accurate patient counseling and early planning for rehabilitation."

Customer Benefits

With nearly a decade of successful deployment at the USEIR, FileMaker Pro is well–entrenched and an invaluable component of the organization's work. And as Dr. Kuhn notes, "The information collected so far constitutes the largest available data pool of serious eye injuries which threaten a person's vision. Research on this data pool continues to advance protocols for eye injury prevention and treatment."

No matter how you look at it, that's an accomplishment to be viewed with pride.

For FileMaker:

Kevin Mallon
Public Relations Manager
FileMaker Inc.
408-987-7227
kevin_mallon@filemaker.com
http://www.filemaker.com