Guide for the New and Curious

Why Join?

Thank you for your interest in joining the global OpenMRS Community! We're made up of people from a wide variety of backgrounds and skill sets, from development to translation, to create and maintain solutions to various countries' problems, as shown below. This is an open source project where your code, documents, QA testing, and translations can literally help save lives. Your contributions help OpenMRS improve health care delivery in resource-constrained environments.

This page will help you get started by joining our communication channels and finding the right project team or squad that you want to contribute towards. Whether you are looking for a short-term project or to grow your contribution and skills over the long term, we hope this guide gives you the information you need to join the community and get started.

1. Learn about OpenMRS

If you've spent some time on our website or our Wiki, you've likely heard a lot about how OpenMRS is transforming medical record digitalization. However, take a little more time and learn about how we operate as a collaborative global network through these helpful guides:

NEW in 2024: OpenMRS Academy!

Want a structured walk-through of how our community works, and an overview of our community software? Check out the courses on the new OpenMRS Academy:

See especially the OpenMRS Fundamentals Academy course.

2. Sign up for Communication Channels

With a global network of members, staying connected digitally is important. Follow these quick steps to get set up on all our relevant communication channels. Different groups and teams may use different platforms, so learn about their differences with our Communication Channels guide. Then, come back here and go through the following steps to begin receiving access and meeting core OpenMRS members.

  1. Sign up for an OpenMRS ID - this is a key step for participating in the community.
  2. Sign into our Community Forum, OpenMRS Talk, with your OpenMRS ID. Introduce yourself to other members of the community! If you're new to Discourse, click on your first notification to begin the interactive tutorial.
  3. For real-time or near real-time communication, you can find us on the following platforms:
    1. Join conversations OpenMRS Talk
    2. Join the OpenMRS Slack
  4. Make yourself familiar with the OpenMRS Wiki, or bookmark it for later!

3. Meet the Teams

OpenMRS is made up of teams whose work is crucial to routine and long-term community activities, projects, and/or modules. Our teams draw on a wide range of abilities and skills. Read more about our current teams and find your fit!

Community Management and OperationsTechnical Action Committee

The Community Management and Operations Team provides overall governance of our community and operations. That includes community conventions, grant management (ie: workplanning, reporting, etc), collaboration with third parties, and upholding community values.

If you're interested in community management at OpenMRS, come learn more about us. All are welcome.

Community Management & Operations Team Home Page

The Technical Action Committee (TAC) oversees OpenMRS' overall technical and system architecture. Their goal is to ensure our software products are built and released correctly.

Anyone is free to contribute to TAC starting with participating in weekly team calls.

Technical Action Committee Home Page

Global EventsTranslation

The Global Events eam is responsible for bringing the OpenMRS community together, globally and locally, in-person or virtually,

Our primary purpose is organizing the annual Implementer's Meeting, from developing the budget to planning individual events.

If you have a passion for event planning, we can use your enthusiasm and skill.

Global Events Team Wiki

Healthcare systems demand software that can be used in any country, with any language, so we must always grow our system's internationalization, localization, and translation repositories. Whether or not you’re a professional translator, consider helping us translate the OpenMRS product.

Help Translate OpenMRS


Looking for a short-term or a more focused commitment? Squads are smaller groups working on discrete/time-limited community activities, projects, and modules. Squads are supported by Teams, which perform more general work. Here are the primary Squads looking for contributors:

SquadProject(s) (with Jira links)Looking forContact
3.0 Frontend Squad

Microfrontends Architecture - Extensible, configurable and independently deployable frontend features. Get your frontend live and updated fast. Frontend architecture designed for extensible and configurable apps and widgets.


Next Generation Frontend for OpenMRS ("OpenMRS 3.0") - re-doing the frontend with Carbon Design System and new workflows and functionality (e.g. labs, orders)

  • Frontend developers with web development or specifically React experience (microfrontend experience is a plus though not required)
  • UX Designers
OpenMRS Dictionary Management (OCL for OpenMRS)

OpenMRS Dictionary Management - A front-end for organizations to manage, edit, and share medical terminologies.

  • Product Manager or BA
  • Developers with React experience or committed to growing their React skills
Platform & RefApp Maintenance

Update core platform (the universally shared backend of OpenMRS) and the Reference Application (recommended bundle that creates a frontend) with necessary tech stack updates, bug fixes, and urgent feature requests. 

Platform 2.5 Release: Stack Upgrade (learn more)

  • Backend Developers
  • Devs interested in REST webservices
Professional Development TeamImprove and manage OpenMRS mentorship programs (ie: Google Summer of Code, OpenMRS Fellowships, etc) Create and improve materials for OpenMRS Academy & related activities (hackathons, bootcamps, skills labs, etc).
  • Instructional designers
  • Facilitators
  • Mentors
  • Content experts

5. Choose Your Flight Path and Begin Contributing

I've met the teams and squads, I've found a project I want to help, how do I begin contributing?

Every project will have a home page full of relevant information including meeting times, group members, communication channels, and other helpful links and resources. Some projects have guides that will help you get started with the technologies, tools, and repos they use.

As some projects operate differently from others, make sure to thoroughly read over their project pages to find the best means of contributing. This can include attending weekly meetings, assisting with documentation, or visiting a project's Jira board.

Get a feel for how the squad or team works together by attending their meetings, joining their Slack channel, and going through past meeting notes, Jira boards, or repos.

6. Bookmark these Community Resources

Community Meeting Calendar

Interested in learning more about any of the teams or squads listed above? Join one of their weekly meetings by checking out the Events and Meeting OpenMRS Calendar where you will find the respective links to the calls, and more information on time and how to attend.

Priority Dashboard

Want to know where the most urgent needs are? These dynamic, draft dashboards shows the top three strategic priorities to achieve our mission, and the status and current needs/gaps of the projects supporting those priorities. While many of these needs/gaps are developer related, these are dynamic, regularly updated pages and those needs can change.

Community Product Priorities

Community Engagement Priorities


We have tried to put together some learning resources should you wish to deepen your knowledge in a particular field or topic.

OpenMRS Knowledge & Professional Development Center

OpenMRS Academies

Project Help

Want a project suitable for a team, or an adventurous individual? Look at our Available Projects list, and click on the project name for more information and contact information for the project's author and/or mentor.

If you want to work on a new project, we would love to entertain your ideas. To create a new project, either start a topic on OpenMRS Talk to gauge community support or learn if similar projects have been started. When you're ready to move forward, copy the New Project Template into the Unassigned Projects section. You can also share your idea with us in our Discussion Platform and members of our community will be happy to facilitate you.

Find Help

If you need extra assistance getting started or finding a way to get involved, please post a topic on our Community Board.

7. Evaluate Milestones Achieved and Progress Made

As you explore and begin the journey in the flight path of your choosing, a good way to ensure you make the best out of your time in the OpenMRS community, and also ensure marked growth and personal development in your skills and understanding of OpenMRS, is to make use of the check lists listed below. You will find these very useful in helping you track your all-round progress and involvement regardless of the flight path taken., and you can always come back to them periodically to ensure you are on track. Remember the best way to build your reputation in the community is to be open and keep learning, advancing, and exploring.


Your Milestone Checklists