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HERON Introduction

HERON (Healthcare Enterprise Repository for Ontological Narration) is a search discovery tool that allows you to search de-identified data from various hospital and medical center sources that include but are not limited to Epic/O2 (the hospital electronic medical record), IDX (the clinical billing system), KU Hospital Cancer Registry, KU Biospecimen Repository, REDCap (selected projects), Social Security Death Index, and University HealthSystem Consortium (Quality Measure Data). By combining the various data sources, researchers can look at the data in new ways not available when viewing data from one source at a time.

1. Access HERON: 

Requirements for access:

  • Secure KUMC network (either on campus or via VPN)
  • KUMC Faculty member status or sponsored by a faculty member
  • Up-to-date Human Subjects Training
  • Signed system access agreement

2. Create a search

3. Analysis Tools

Each tool requires a patient set, also called a patient list. To create a patient set, click the Patient List checkbox on the search pop-up that appears after you click Run Query. Once the search is complete, you can access the patient set in the previous query box (lower left section of the screen) by clicking on the search title and opening the results folder.

  • Demographics - quickly create a bar graph for demographic information (e.g., gender, race, etc.) for one or two patient sets.
  • Timeline - create a visual representation for patient observation occurrence. Observations are marked with a tic on a timeline. Hover over the observation tic for additional information, such as time or value when available.

4. Request Data

Faculty members can request identified or de-identified data. See instructions for requesting a data set or watch the training video. Data is provided via REDCap and as a CSV file.

Learn more about the Frontiers Research Participant Registry and searching HERON to find consenting patients for research trials.

Medical Informatics Support

REDCap Training Videos are a great starting point.

Introduction to REDCap and HERON: Beginner Training Clinics
This is an introduction for new users or users needing a refresher.

For questions or help with projects: REDCap & HERON Office Hours
15-20 minute appointment to assist with specific questions (this is not a beginner course).

For support by email: Contact MI Support at

For project development MI: Contact MI Support at Funding is required.

Internal Medicine

University of Kansas Medical Center
Internal Medicine
Medical Informatics Division
Mailstop 3065
Student Center, 3001C
3901 Rainbow Boulevard
Kansas City KS 66160