Disseminating a Standard for Medical Records in Emergency Departments Among Different Software Vendors Using HL7 CDA

Stud Health Technol Inform. 2017:243:132-136.


A standardized medical record for the emergency department (GEDMR) was released in Germany, but only sparsely and randomly implemented by emergency department (ED) electronic health record (EHR) vendors. A reason for this may be a lacking common language between the medical and the Health Information Technology (HIT) domain. HL7 clinical document architecture (CDA) may leverage this communication gap. This paper reports on the effects of a professional medical association record standard on EHR vendors and the German ED-EHR market. Standard records and data standards are developed and published by different institutions either on governmental, healthcare agency or medical association level. There are some standard records, especially by US cardiology associations, transformed into HL7 C-CDA. GEDMR was modeled as HL7 CDA with the use of interoperable terminologies like LOINC and SNOMED CT. Being part of an emergency department data registry development project, local deployment at 15 project hospitals receiving sufficient funding was performed. Two major ED-EHR vendors adapted GEDMR within their product including CDA export. 106,868 CDAs were produced in six hospitals until now. Four local implementations with four different ED-EHRs were developed, producing 42,256 CDAs. Five additional vendors are adapting or developing an ED-EHR. The GEDMR-CDA implementation guide with funding for implementation in project hospitals had a significant impact on the German ED-EHR market. Within two years after release, a broadening and increasingly self-enforcing support by German ED-EHR vendors is notable.

Keywords: Electronic Health Records; Emergency Department; Emergency Medicine; Health Level Seven/Standards; Medical Records.

MeSH terms

  • Electronic Health Records*
  • Emergency Service, Hospital*
  • Germany
  • Humans
  • Software
  • Systematized Nomenclature of Medicine*