Thursday, April 27, 2017

C# Note

One of our customers had an issue integrating our C-callable DLL into a Windows C# app. The first call to mhdrg1() worked but subsequent calls fails with memory corruption. After some back and forth, during which we suspected memory allocation (which turned not to be the culprit), our client resolved the issue themselves and were kind enough to follow up with a note which we reproduce here in case it is helpful to future C# integrators:

After further tests, I concluded that the form of the data being PASSED IN as StringBuilders is the correct/best way. PInvoke marshalling handles the nitty-gritty.
Ref: https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/e8w969hb.aspx  and  https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/fzhhdwae.aspx

Declaring the function (actually a delegate in its current test state) as returning "void" and calling it results in no problems/corruptions/errors. Thus corruption was occurring when trying to get a return value. So, I changed the return type to IntPtr on each function delegate and used marshaling to retrieve an ANSI string from the pointer. Viola! It works perfectly.

Monday, November 21, 2016

V34a Inventory On-line & Available For Purchase

Our revised v34 software, v34a, is on-line and available in our on-line store:
http://www.drggroupers.net/v34/

V34a handles the errata published by the DRG definers in mid November.

For details of why revised v34 (causing us to revise our support of it), follow this link:

https://www.cms.gov/Medicare/Medicare-Fee-for-Service-Payment/AcuteInpatientPPS/Downloads/FY2017-CMS-1655-FR-MS-DRG.zip

Thursday, November 17, 2016

V34a update #1

Patching the logic to match the new definition was more complicated that our initial assessment indicated.

Discovering that yet another MDC has been added to the "ok to have an invalid Sex" list was also both unexpected and time-consuming.

For the record, we find that matching the DRG assignments in the official test database requires that allow invalid sex for MDCs 8, 14 and 25.

Our DAE validation is done, our demo web site has been updated and we are not going to make our target of end-of-business today (2016-11-17) for the re-release, but we should be able to complete the re-release by early tomorrow (2016-11-17).

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

V34 Errata From NTIS (our version v34a, their v34 release 3)

Today is Tuesday, November 15th, 2016. Last Friday, an unexpected delivery from NTIS (who distribute the office US Federal DRG implementation on which we base our implementation) showed up in our mail.

This delivery contained a disc we had not ordered and a notice from NTIS that the official V34 R2 (release 2) had issues and so there was an R3. Here is alink to the official Errata documents: https://www.cms.gov/Medicare/Medicare-Fee-for-Service-Payment/AcuteInpatientPPS/Downloads/FY2017-CMS-1655-FR-MS-DRG.zip

We spent the weekend reviewing the changes and deciding what we should do. Given what we found (logic and code attribute changes), here is our plan:

(a) Do a re-release as quickly as possible, offering a free upgrade to all customers who bought the initial release.

(b) Accept that the "v34" as version tag is associated with the initial, erroneous release.

(c) Use "v34a" in software version tags and in the executable file names and distribution files which supercede the initial release and so users can more easily tell if they have the corrected software (we realize that this may also cause users to have to change configuration scripts, etc, but we felt that certainty about having the corrected version was paramount). NOTE: We are not changing configuration file names as such v34.ini for DRGFilt as there is no need.

(d) Try to keep our grumbling about what a pain in the neck this is to ourselves as much as possible. Suffice it to say we know this is a drag for those of you who bought the initial release and we feel your pain.

We spent yesterday, Monday, figuring out how to schedule this internally and what, exactly, needs to be revisited.

Today the real work starts. We hope to have a new release live on the Website by the close of business tomorrow, Wednesday and to be re-filling already-filled orders on Thursday and Friday.

Monday, October 10, 2016

V34 Deployment Set For This PM

Our automated download creator and validator is done. All of our downloads have been created and validated. We are on schedule to update our on-line etail site this evening.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Antivirus (AV) False Positives

Our windows products come with installers, as it expected.

We use Nullsoft  Scriptable Install System (NSIS) to create our installers (see http://nsis.sourceforge.net/Main_Page for details).

Sometimes Antivirus software, such as Norton AV (now branded as Symantec) incorrectly flag our installers as containing viruses.

In order to try to keep current and keep ahead of Antivirus (AV) false positives, we upgraded to the latest version of NSIS this year, which should make for better Windows 10 support and a lower chance of false flagging by AV software.

When we want to assess the status of our installers, we use this very hand (and free) site: https://www.virustotal.com/

Thursday, October 6, 2016

V34 Deployment Delayed Until Monday, October 10, 2016

Last year was the first IC10-based version and we had to dramatically change our venerable processes to put out the new product line. Thus we were weeks later than we would have liked and the process was largely manual.

This year we are automating the process to improve quality and consistency. We underestimated the level of effort required and so were not able to make yesterday's deadline. We have decided to take the entire weekend in order to make sure that everything is right, so we are now expecting to have our v34 products on-line for sale by first thing Monday morning.