1st Annual EUBIROD meeting

Dasman Center for Research and Treatment of Diabetes, Kuwait City

Kuwait City, Kuwait, 2nd-4th May 2009

The BIRO System Infrastructure

V. Baglioni, U.Perugia, Italy

First BIRO Academy Residential Course, Kuwait City, Kuwait, 2nd May 2009


The BIRO approach is based on the strategic development of a specialised system that involves standardized processing of electronic medical records and routine data exchange across collaborating centres. The local application of the system provides the method for each centre to extract relevant data from local data sources, performing the same standard statistical analysis and producing a comparable report for selected BIRO indicators. Further to that, there is a need to safely send aggregated data towards a central server that would compile and process all aggregate data to derive an overall statistical report.

In this presentation, Valentina Baglioni, software engineer and project manager of the BIRO project for the University of Perugia, provides an overview of how the Consortium has developed the BIRO framework and integrated all the different components for the implementation of its general architecture.

Here Valentina shows a series of technical slides starting from the description of the entire process, and providing insights into the local BIRO system that has been specifically developed to manage the core tasks foreseen by the BIRO architecture.

The local BIRO system establishes a connection with the local database where clinical data are stored, extracting relevant records according to specifications given by the common dataset through the “BIRO Adaptor”, resulting in XML BIRO export files.

Data concerning a single patient, the profile and the clinical episodes clustered by episode date are then loaded into a BIRO local database using the “BIRO Database Manager”. The system triggers execution of the BIRO statistical engine to produce the local report and partial results files that are sent to the central BIRO system via Communication software. By compiling results from different centres, the central server produces results for the whole population starting from partial results coming from multiple sites. A central component of the statistical engine deploys the overall BIRO statistical report. In an attempt to transfer BIRO technology easily and effectively, a graphical user interface, the “BIROBox”, has been developed to provide users with a simple instrument capable of managing all functions and the different steps required for the application of the local BIRO system.

Furthermore, Valentina Baglioni briefs about the results obtained in accordance with directions provided by the Privacy Impact Assessment, so that international results for diabetes indicators are obtained without transferring sensitive data out of the boundaries of the local system. Most importantly, the use of the local BIRO System does not require any changes in the way data are gathered, but it offers additional tools that any centre can routinely use to compare own practice against other units.