Health Level Seven (HL7), a developer of global healthcare standards, has announced the launch of four new implementation guides with its Clinical Document Architecture (CDA). The four guides address basic documentation requirements for diagnostic imaging, consultations, quality reporting and home health monitoring. The home health monitoring guide has been developed in association with the Continua Health Alliance. “Getting healthcare standards to market quickly has been a longstanding issue, while the sheer propagation of standards and the resulting lack of interoperability is a growing concern,” says Bob Dolin, MD, chair-elect for HL7 and co-chair of the HL7 Structured Documents Work Group (SDWG). “We have found, however, that CDA can be quickly and easily tailored for a broad number of use cases.” First published in 2000, CDA is a leading standard for the exchange of healthcare information. CDA provides a common framework together with specific use case implementation guides. “While many healthcare standards are detailed and somewhat rigid, CDA is a generic standard that was designed with flexibility in mind,” says Dolin. He added that by using CDA and implementation guides it is possible to address new use cases in months instead of years. Four new implementation guides were developed and balloted by the HL7 SDWG with support from industry partners: The CDA Implementation Guide Personal Healthcare Monitoring Reports was published this week and is now available for download at the HL7 website. HL7’s Structured Documents Work Group will make minor revisions to the other guides and examples, based on the ballot feedback, and expects to publish the three remaining implementation guides later in November.

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