If the Union Ministry of Health & Family Welfare Days has it way to define a new protocol to have a unique code to capture a patient’s medical history-the administration to access the said patient’s medical history will be made easier at all the medical institutions in the country. For this unique code will define a patient’s medical history.
The ministry is under the process of including the Systematised Nomenclature of Medicine- Clinical Terms (SNOMED CT) as the standard for clinical vocabulary for use in medical records.
SNOMED CT is a popular coding standard in the Health IT industry. It is a comprehensive clinical terminology, originally created by the College of American Pathologists and, as of April, 2007, owned, maintained, and distributed by the International Health Terminology Standards Development Organisation (IHTSDO).
At the moment, 28 countries are members of the IHTSDO.
This comprehensive, multilingual clinical healthcare terminology, used across the globe enables standardisation of clinical vocabulary for use in Electronic Medical Records/ Electronic Health Records (EHR) by hospitals and healthcare providers, besides aiding in generation of unique EHR for each individual.
Incorporation of such a comprehensive terminology in the EHR requires understanding of the underlying concept model, various levels at which clinical information can be effectively represented, and cross-mapping to other international vocabulary standards.
The Union Health Ministry has designated the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC), Pune, to run the National Release Centre, for distribution and management of SNOMED CT within India.
The National Release Centre (NRC) recently held a workshop on Introduction to SNOMED CT.
“This workshop has provided a platform for the users and implementers to comprehend SNOMED CT, its implementation, underlying concept model, levels at which clinical information can be effectively represented and mapping to other international vocabulary standards,” an official of the C-DAC said.
It was attended by medical professionals, researchers, hardware software manufacturers and system integrators.
The workshop was a part of a series of interactive workshops being hosted by Apollo Hospitals and NRC across the country to give fillip to usage of SNOMED CT in the healthcare IT sector.
“India today is on the verge of major transitions in the field of Healthcare IT. For moving towards an Integrated Healthcare System, the intent is to introduce a uniform system for maintenance of Electronic Medical Record or Electronic Health Record by the hospitals and healthcare providers, and enable unique EHR for each individual in the country,” Arvind Sivaramakrishnan, Chief Information Officer, Apollo Hospitals Enterprises Ltd said.