Web Service-Based interRAI Outcomes

CIM Inc. works with organizations that have existing case management or client tracking systems used to record everything needed to operate their business and therefore do not need a customized assessment system. When such an organization wishes to deploy the use of interRAI assessment instruments with their operations, in order to receive the value of the wide range of available outcomes measure, they will first need to incorporate the interRAI data items within their existing information system. Once having created the capacity to collect these new assessments, they have two basic options to gain access to the associated outcome measures:

  • Program the outcome measures within their existing system
  • Use CIM Inc.’s web service-based outcome measures service

Although any organization with a license with interRAI can receive their source code for computing the associated outcome measures, there is a considerable learning curve involved in working with these algorithms, which are published in statistical code. Even though some of these measures do not involve overly complex computations, there are certainly some measures that do. For our own ten years of experience working with these datasets and algorithms, it is easy to grossly under-estimate the work required to not just program the algorithms within the respective in-house system, but more importantly, to test the new code with a sufficiently deep test dataset to validate it for all possible responses (for some complex algorithms, the possible data combinations can easily number in the thousands).

The CIM Inc. web service engine provides three basic types of outcome measures based on the intellectual property algorithms of interRAI:

  • Scales (up to 9)
  • Clinical Assessment Protocols (CAPs) (up to 27)
  • Resource Utilization Group (RUG) score in terms of group and category

These web services are exposed to customer systems used to collect detailed assessments containing the data items from interRAI-based instruments. Upon the completion of entering an automated assessment, the customer system sends all responses from the assessment to the CIM Inc. web service for generation of outcome measures based on interRAI intellectual property. Using the CIM Inc. web services to compute and return these outcomes measures relieves customers from the burden of coding the elaborate algorithms published by interRAI.

CIM Inc. provides detailed technical documentation for customer IT staff to use in creating the necessary messaging interfaces. The generation web service consists of a single SOAP-based web-service. This service has a single operation (to calculate all possible interRAI outcome measures). The web service can be used to calculate the outcome measures identified above (CAPs, Scales, Resource Utilization Group (RUG) classifications) from a list of observations. Observations are simple value objects that contain two string fields, name and value and a single Boolean.

The name used for observations is the interRAI published “icode” name. CIM Inc. provides customers with the taxonomy of names for the respective assessment instrument(s) that are being collected in their local environment.