IEEE and IHTSDO Sign Memorandum of Understanding

Coordination of Medical Device Terminology to Improve Interoperability & Patient Care

PISCATAWAY, N.J. & COPENHAGEN, Denmark--()--IEEE, the world’s largest professional association advancing technology for the benefit of humanity, and the International Health Terminology Standards Development Organisation (IHTSDO®), the leading provider of standardized clinical terminology, today announced a collaboration agreement that will encourage harmonization of terminology related to medical devices so as to better support clinical care.

"This agreement is an important step in improving integration of services at the point of care; enabling delivery of improved healthcare and patient safety by removing a barrier to reliable semantic interoperability,” said Elliot Sloane, the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society’s Director responsible for the 11073 medical device informatics standards. "It will bring benefits across the spectrum from self-managed fitness through to intensive care."

Standardized terminology is a key building block for modern information systems designed to meet the needs of patients and health care providers for the safe exchange of clinical information. SNOMED Clinical Terms (SNOMED CT) is a comprehensive, multi-lingual, terminology used by family doctors and other health care providers in many countries, with the goal of ensuring that health information is captured consistently, accurately, and reliably across the health system. Likewise, IEEE has developed a family of standards which make it possible to exchange and evaluate vital signs and other data between different medical devices. Increasingly, this information must also be available through patient’s health records.

“Collaboration between standards development organizations has the potential to help improve patient safety and quality of care by reducing overlaps and gaps between the various standards,” said Martin Severs, Chair of the IHTSDO Management Board. “IHTSDO looks forward to working in cooperation with IEEE and other standards bodies to achieve this."

About IHTSDO

The IHTSDO (International Health Terminology Standards Development Organisation) and its Members seek to improve the health of humankind by fostering the development and use of suitable standardized clinical terminologies, notably SNOMED CT, in order to support the safe, accurate, and effective exchange of health information. SNOMED Clinical Terms™ (SNOMED CT™) is a standardized terminology that can be used as the foundation for electronic health records and other applications. For example, different clinicians often use different terms to describe the same concept. SNOMED CT contains more than 310,000 unique concepts and more than 1.3 million links or relationships between them that ensure that this information is captured consistently, accurately, and reliably across the health system. The terminology is in use in more than fifty countries around the world. SNOMED CT was originally created by the College of American Pathologists by combining SNOMED RT and a computer-based nomenclature and classification known as Clinical Terms Version 3, formerly known as Read Codes Version.

For more information: www.ihtsdo.org.

About IEEE

IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Inc.), the world's largest technical professional society, is commemorating its 125th anniversary in 2009 by "Celebrating 125 Years of Engineering the Future" around the globe. Through its more than 375,000 members in 160 countries, IEEE is a leading authority on a wide variety of areas ranging from aerospace systems, computers and telecommunications to biomedical engineering, electric power and consumer electronics. Dedicated to the advancement of technology, IEEE publishes 30 percent of the world's literature in the electrical and electronics engineering and computer science fields, and has developed nearly 900 active industry standards. The organization annually sponsors more than 850 conferences worldwide.

For more information: www.ieee.org.

Contacts

For IEEE:
Melvin Reynolds, +44 (0)1989 763 120
MelvinR@AMS-Consulting.co.uk
or
For IHTSDO:
Jennifer Zelmer, +45-3644-8736
media@ihtsdo.org

Contacts

For IEEE:
Melvin Reynolds, +44 (0)1989 763 120
MelvinR@AMS-Consulting.co.uk
or
For IHTSDO:
Jennifer Zelmer, +45-3644-8736
media@ihtsdo.org