Health Level Seven Announces Name Change to Reflect International Focus

Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA - January 14, 2010 - Health Level Seven® International (HL7®), the global authority for interoperability and standards in healthcare information technology, today announced that the organization has changed its name to Health Level Seven International to represent its focus on the development of global healthcare IT standards.

The name change completes the process that began one year ago when the Board of Directors discussed changing the name to reflect the increasing adoption of HL7 in many countries worldwide and the growing number of HL7 standards that are being published as international standards by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO).

"Changing the name to HL7 International affirms our commitment to being a truly international organization in scope." said Robert Dolin, MD, HL7 International board chair. "HL7's focus on internationalization will bring economies of scale and the ability to define a cohesive interoperability strategy that works for all nations." 

Most recently, HL7's EHR System Functional Model (EHR-S FM), Release 1.1 became an international standard approved by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) in the last quarter of 2009. The EHR-S Functional Model had broad international input from clinicians, vendors, health information management and HIT professionals, and privacy and security officers that practice in a variety of care settings throughout HL7 affiliates and ISO participating national member bodies.

A number of countries and institutions are already using or plan to use HL7's EHR-System Function Model (EHR-S FM), including The Netherlands, Japan, Korea and Thailand. Work is currently underway on the second release of the EHR-S Functional Model Release 2, which will be a global standard in scope.

HL7's Version 2.5 messaging standard, approved as an ISO standard in June of 2009, allows interoperability between electronic health record systems, practice management systems, laboratory IT systems, dietary, pharmacy and billing systems. HL7 International can share its products with the international standards community, thus reducing the need for duplicative work. HL7 standards are widely used by healthcare software vendors that sell their health information technology products internationally.

As a founding member of the Joint Initiative Council, the organization also collaborates closely with other international SDOs such as the European Committee for Standardization (CEN), ISO, GS1, the Clinical Data Interchange Standards Consortium (CDISC) and the International Health Terminology Standards Development Organization (IHTSDO) to jointly develop one standard for a single purpose.

"HL7 is a global organization-in its membership, in its implementation, and in its influence," said HL7 International CEO Charles Jaffe, MD, PhD. "As more and more people access healthcare across national borders and as caregivers share healthcare and clinical research information on a global scale, HL7 needed to reflect the changing care paradigm."

About Health Level Seven International (HL7)

Founded in 1987, Health Level Seven International is the global authority for healthcare Information interoperability and standards with affiliates established in more than 30 countries. HL7 is a non-profit, ANSI accredited standards development organization dedicated to providing a comprehensive framework and related standards for the exchange, integration, sharing, and retrieval of electronic health information that supports clinical practice and the management, delivery and evaluation of health services. HL7's more than 2,300 members represent approximately 500 corporate members, which include more than 90 percent of the information systems vendors serving healthcare. HL7 collaborates with other standards developers and provider, payer, philanthropic and government agencies at the highest levels to ensure the development of comprehensive and reliable standards and successful interoperability efforts. 

HL7's endeavors are sponsored, in part, by the support of its benefactors: Accenture; Booz Allen Hamilton; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; Duke Translational Medicine Institute (DTMI); Eclipsys Corporation; Eli Lilly & Company; Epic Systems Corporation; European Medicines Agency; the Food and Drug Administration; GE Healthcare Information Technologies; GlaxoSmithKline; Intel Corporation; InterSystems Corporation; Kaiser Permanente; Lockheed Martin; McKesson Provider Technology; Microsoft Corporation; NHS Connecting for Health; NICTIZ National Healthcare; Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation; Oracle Corporation; Partners HealthCare System, Inc.; Pfizer, Inc.; Philips Healthcare; QuadraMed Corporation; Quest Diagnostics Inc.; Siemens Healthcare; St. Jude Medical; Thomson Reuters; the U.S. Department of Defense, Military Health System; and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

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

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