Who we are

HL7 UK is the UK affiliate organisation to HL7, and was set up in January 2000. The mission of HL7 UK is complementary to that of the parent HL7 organisation:

To support the development, promotion implementation of HL7 Standards in ways which meet the needs of healthcare organisations, health professionals and healthcare software suppliers in the United Kingdom

What we set out to do:

  • educate the UK healthcare community and healthcare information system developers about HL7 standards, and promote effective and consistent implementation of HL7 standards in the UK.
  • identify and analyse UK healthcare business requirements for electronic communication of healthcare information.
  • match UK national requirement with HL7 messages, and if necessary, identifying the need for UK specific messages, profiles and implementation guides.
  • report to HL7 on any specific UK needs that are not met by existing HL7 standards.
  • prototype and pilot with clinical and business validation.

What we provide:

  • information about HL7 in a manner that is accessible and intelligible to a UK healthcare audience through: a web site containing relevant documents and links; tutorials and meetings; occasional papers and publications.
  • education and training for: systems developers; healthcare organisations; healthcare professionals; those concerned with compliance requirements and conformance certification.
  • encouragement for subgroups concerned with UK interests in specific aspects of HL7 standards.

How we work

HL7 UK is a voluntary association of interested parties drawn from the supplier, user, provider and technical expert members of the UK healthcare community. It conducts its business according to the requirements of its affiliation agreement with HL7 and the aims expressed in its mission statement.

Day-to-day management of HL7 UK is carried out through a Management Board, drawn by election from the membership. Technical subcommittees of the main group address matters of specific interest in relation to Version 2 implementation and Version 3 development. The whole HL7 UK community, at meetings held four times a year, takes decisions on matters relating to the UK interest. Decision-making is by consensus-forming in the first place, but ultimately by ballot based on American National Standards Institute (ANSI) rules.

HL7 UK also collaborates with other developers of healthcare and information technology standards to optimise progress through sharing of skills and knowledge.

Interoperability standards

HL7 UK seeks to identify HL7 standards that are applicable to UK healthcare without change and those that require adaptations or national implementation guidelines to meet UK requirements.

Where UK adaptations, profiles or guidelines are required, HL7 UK proposes solutions that meet the need for consistent national implementation, while avoiding unnecessary divergence from HL7 standards.

To this end, HL7 UK feeds back national requirements and proposed solutions to its parent body.