Bridging the Chasm and the CIIC

This group has been Archived


This Work Group has been archived.

HL7 Hosts the Clinical Community at Historic "Bridging the Chasm" Meeting

Dialogue with clinicians to identify information requirements and common processes with the goal of improving healthcare

Health Level Seven, Inc. (HL7), the leading authority for global healthcare IT standards, today announced that it will host the "Bridging the Chasm" meeting with the clinical community on April 19-21, 2009 in Washington, DC. More than 100 high-level representatives from over 70 medical specialty societies and other appropriate organizations, including relevant government organizations as well as professionals from outside the U.S. will be attending this event. This meeting is funded with support from the Agency for Healthcare Quality and Research.

The purpose of the Bridging the Chasm event is to bring together interested and knowledgeable parties to define and identify consensus-based information requirements that will contribute to higher quality, more efficient healthcare. To date, standards and applications in the use of health information technology have largely been driven by the technical community with limited input from the clinical community. As a result, not only do many of the available standards fail to meet the needs of the clinical community, but an increasing number of medical professional societies are independently defining their own standards. These two gaps must be bridged.

Adding a heightened need is the implementation of the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act (HITECH ACT), included as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), which has allotted $22 billion to advance the use of health information technology. President Obama has stressed the importance of using technology to improve the healthcare system and has recognized the importance of standards. HL7 believes that the clinical and technical communities must work together to fulfill the vision of better healthcare through better information. That goal can only be realized by closing the gap between the information technology professionals and the clinical professionals.

In an effort to bridge these gaps, HL7 has invited representatives from the clinical community to articulate their requirements, to harmonize those requirements across medical specialties, and to create a process by which those requirements are communicated to the HIT community.

The goals of the meeting are to:

  • Establish the value of standards and interoperability to the clinical community
  • Identify priorities from a clinical perspective
  • Have clinicians clearly articulate their requirements in non-technical terms
  • Identify common processes by which the specialty groups can define and communicate information requirements to the HIT community


This meeting will not be technical in nature and will cover topics such as: what is required to ensure better quality of care; the importance of unambiguous terminology in research and patient care; primary care HIT needs; clinical guidelines and point-of-care tools; clinical decision support; and a new vision of the Electronic Health Record.

HL7 anticipates that actual work will be performed within each clinical specialty group using the common processes defined and adopted by each clinical specialty group. The resulting products would then be brought together for harmonization and shared use. The clinical communities will define, control and own the products and processes. HL7 will facilitate the process and create technical requirements from their input.

Representatives from the following organizations will be present at the Bridging the Chasm meeting:

American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology
American Academy of Dermatology
American Academy of Family Physicians
American Academy of Home Care
American Academy of Neurology
American Academy of Pediatrics
American Academy of Sleep Medicine
American Association of Critical Care Nurses
American Association of Neurological Surgeons
American Association of Nurse Anesthetists
American Board of Family Medicine
American Board of Internal Medicine
American Board of Medical Specialties
American Board of Ophthalmology
American Board of Pediatrics
American Board of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
American Chiropractic Association
American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology
American College of Cardiology
American College of Chest Physicians
American College of Emergency Physicians
American College of Medical Quality
American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine
American College of Physicians
American College of Preventive Medicine
American College of Radiology
American College of Rheumatology
American Dietetic Association
American Health Information Management Association
American Gastroenterological Association
American Geriatrics Society
American Medical Informatics Association
American Nurses Association
American Podiatric Medical Association
American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy
American Society of Addiction Medicine
American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery
American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery
American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons
American Society of Hematology
American Thrombosis & Hemostasis Network
Anesthesia Patient Safety Foundation
Arizona State University
Association of Clinical Research Professionals
Association of Nurses in AIDS Care
Association of Rehabilitation Nurses
Avon Breast Evaluation Center
Clinical Data Interchange Standards Consortium
College of American Pathologists
Duke Center for Community Research
Duke University School of Medicine
empirica GmbH
Epstein Becker & Green, PC
HL7 Brazil
Intermountain Healthcare
Mayo Clinic
MD Anderson Cancer Center
McGill University
National Library of Medicine
National Quality Forum
New England Healthcare Institute
New York State Department of Health
Office of the Air Force Surgeon General
Public Health Data Standards Consortium
Renal Physicians Association
SIR Foundation
Society of Clinical Data Managers
Society of Critical Care Medicine
Society of Thoracic Surgeons
Standing Committee of European Doctors, CPME
Wound, Ostomy and Continence Nurses Society