Russian affiliate joins global healthcare standards organization

By Bernie Monegain
09:23 AM

Health Level Seven (HL7), a global organization that sets standards for interoperability of health information technology with members in 57 countries, announced Thursday the addition of HL7 Russia to its growing number of affiliates.

HL7 officials say their affiliates are a critical component of the increasing global scope and orientation of the HL7 standards.

"The success of Health Level Seven and the extensive global implementation of its standards are due in large part to the significant contributions from our affiliate members around the world," said HL7 CEO Charles Jaffe, MD. "The skills of many individuals in Russia bring an invaluable addition to HL7, and we look forward to them leading the way to greater adoption of health informatics standards in Eurasia."

Tatyana Zarubina, MD, head of the medical information science and cybernetics department at Russian State Medical University, heads HL7 Russia. Zarubina has several years of experience as a professor of informatics and senior staff scientist leading the development of healthcare information systems. She has also been a member of the International Informatization Academy since 2001.

"Russia needs to implement HL7 standards to integrate medical information systems on both horizontal and vertical levels," said Zarubina. "We hope that the advancement and adoption of HL7 standards in the Russian Federation will help to create a single information space in healthcare and medical data. We look forward to collaborating with the global healthcare information community to improve the quality of healthcare for people around the world."

Each HL7 affiliation is an open, not-for-profit and consensus-based organization that contributes to the development of core HL7 standards through participation in HL7 work groups and the standards voting process and then localizes the standards to its specific requirements. Affiliates also support and distribute the HL7 standards in their country, produce translations and implementation guides for their users and participate in HL7 work groups.

HL7 affiliates have been established around the globe, including Argentina, Australia, Austria, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mexico, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Romania, Russia, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Turkey, the United Kingdom and Uruguay.

HL7 Russia's immediate activities and goals will be directed at the following areas:

1. Translating, adopting, developing and implementing HL7 standards in different areas of clinical medicine and the healthcare field;
2. Teaching the methodology of HL7 architecture to doctors, IT specialists, students and postgraduates and educating the public about HL7;
3. Assisting in the creation of national medical standards using HL7 experiences.