Collaborative development of clinical templates as a national resource

Int J Med Inform. 2009 Apr;78 Suppl 1:S95-100. doi: 10.1016/j.ijmedinf.2008.06.003. Epub 2008 Jul 18.


There is growing interest in the development of standards which structure information round discrete clinical concepts, in a way that supports system development and interoperability. Most notable are the openEHR Archetypes and Templates, and HL7 Templates. A project is described which explored the potential for these to engage and support clinical practitioners in developing clinical information standards in an open and accessible way. The project defined a clinical template as a clinical information model, which could be used to define the content of a form in a health record system, for example a continence assessment. The project followed three phases: professional development, including networking for content development; library implementation, including modelling and processes for managing content and relating to information standards; and implementation in working systems in a manner that is professionally acceptable. The project findings are encouraging although there remain some important issues to be explored in further work. The topic has now emerged as an important area of standards development, and a useful focus for international cooperation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Cooperative Behavior*
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Scotland
  • State Medicine / organization & administration*