What is the role of HL7 standards in the eHealth Digital Services Infrastructure (eHDSI)?
eHDSI calls for EU-wide specifications and national extensions or localizations. Interoperability assets and shared terminology resources supporting HL7 standards adoption are needed to streamline large scale eHealth deployment at a reasonable time and cost.
The eStandards project, led by the HL7 Foundation, aims to create a roadmap for collaborative eStandards development fit for the purpose of large scale eHealth deployment. CEN/TC251 and IHE Europe participate in the eStandards project along with key eHealth stakeholders in Europe.
In view of these developments, it is worth reflection on:
- How should HL7 standards be promoted at the national and European level?
- What kind of tools and resources can HL7 offer to support its European members?
- What synergies does HL7 need to engage in Europe?
HL7 as an International Organization
The whole idea of regional offices for HL7 goes back to Ed Hammond’s third HL7 chairmanship in 2008-2009, inspired by the vision to turn HL7 into a truly international organization. This began with changing the organization’s name from Health Level Seven, Inc to Health Level Seven International.
It was not the first time that HL7 Europe came up in discussions. In the 1990’s, the European HL7 affiliates abandoned the idea thinking there wasn’t enough common ground: HL7 was the place for global standards development and localization was national business: France, Italy, and Germany had as much in common as with Australia, Canada, and Japan.