v8.1 Release Notes


We are happy to announce that v8.1 is ready for download! This release includes some important bug fixes and enhancements requested by customers. 

New features include:

  • Specimen Collection Workflow for Clinic Coordinators
  • Specimen Recieve workflow for lab staff
  • Configure screens based on role
  • Specimen collection & Distribution PDF manifests
  • User groups
  • Colour coding in container map view
  • New Field: Specimen availability status
  • Form: Edit control types
  • Audit Form edits
  • eConsents plugin enhancements
  • OpenClinica plugin enhancements
  • Project Tracker plugin enhancements 


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CommunitySource Code GitHub linkforums.openspecimen.org

Software/Hardware requirements

Review this page before attempting to upgrade for any changes: Software/Hardware Requirements.

User Groups

Allows you to create groups of users of same institute to easily assign print rules and share carts & queries.

Custom Forms Enhancements

Reported by: University of Pittsburgh & Murdoch Children's Research Institute

Below are some enhancements added to the redesigned forms module:

  • Edit control types: Change form fields from dropdown to radio button or text field, checkbox to multi-select field etc.
  • Form audits: All changes to forms like add, edit, delete and changes in form associations are audited.
  • Placing forms fields in same row and edit these at anytime.

For more details, refer to Forms & Custom Fields.

Role-based display of fields

Reported by: Washington University & University of Cyprus

In previous versions, only PHI fields could be hidden for certain user roles. But there are use cases where non-PHI fields need to be hidden for specific user roles. For e.g., storage location field from clinicians or nurses. Since these users' role is to collect primary specimens, it is irrelevant to show the storage location field to them. In order to support this, in v8.1 admins can configure workflow JSONS to hide fields based on user roles.  

Refer to 'Role-based display of fields' for more details. 

Color coding in container map view

Reported by: University of Auckland, Murdoch Children's Research Institute & others

The container map displays a graphical overview of what specimens are stored in it. To visualize this map better, you now have an option to configure different colors based on specimen types.

Configuration of these colors can be done using the dropdown manager. For more details, refer to 'Color Coding in Container Map View'.

Specimen collection & order manifests

Manifests can now be generated during specimen collection and distribution. Format and content of the PDF file can be configured at either protocol level or system level. 

For more details, refer to Manifests (PDF).

Coordinator workflow for specimen collection

Reported by: Washington University

During specimen collection, based on the role of the user, you can show or hide fields based on the workflow. 

  • Configure specimen collection page to display fields based on logged in user. For e.g., when nurses collect the specimens, storage location field is irrelevant. So this can be hidden for coordinators(e.g. nurses) like below.

  • Configure the collection and received event fields as required. For e.g. hide received event when specimens are collected by coordinators.
  • Default values for the event fields as required, for e.g. default collection date to current date or leave it blank.

Refer to <https://openspecimen.atlassian.net/wiki/x/dABNiQ> for more details.

Receive specimens workflow

Reported by: Washington University & University of Cyprus

If the users who are marking the specimens as collected vs received in OpenSpecimen are different, this workflow can be split into two different steps. For e.g. coordinators(e.g. nurses) can mark the specimens as collected leaving out the details of received event. Once the specimens are received in the lab, the users at the lab can scan the labels and mark the specimens as received along with details such as received date, quality, and provide a new label if required.

For more details, refer to <https://openspecimen.atlassian.net/wiki/x/egCHi>

Specimen availability status

A new field has been introduced to determine the availability of the specimen. This is calculated based on activity status and collection status values of the specimen. You can search based on this field in list view filters and query filters. Different colored icons can be configured to indicate the different status of the specimen.

Refer to Specimen Status for more details.

Project tracker plugin enhancements

Reported by: Washington University

Below are some of the enhancements implemented in project tracker plugin:

  • Ability to download the request manifest PDF. The manifest format/template can be specified either at the project level or at the system level.
  • Ability to put the request "On Hold".
  • Filters to allow users to search for requests by their IDs, creation, start and end date ranges.
  • Ability to move requests between projects of the same site. 

eConsent plugin enhancements

Reported by: University of Miami

Below are some of the enhancements implemented in eConsents plugin:

  • Mobile app support for eConsents
  • Support different header and footer for consent documents per collection protocol

For more details, refer to Configure consent PDF and <TBD>

Bugs & Enhancements

Below are some other fixes implemented in v8.1:

All Improvements and Bugs

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