Washington, D.C., 28 March 2013 (PAHO/WHO)-  Interoperability, as an essential piece to achieving the full potential of information and communication technologies (ICTs) and medical devices in support of health systems, will be the focus of the regional technical consultative meeting organized by the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO), which will take place on 23-24 April 2013 in Lima, Peru.

Using cases representing HIV/AIDS, TB, Malaria, MCH, and Diabetes, the “eHealth Data Standardization and Interoperability” technical consultation aims to obtaining input on the following:

  • Country-specific landscape analysis to identify the health informatics standards currently being used by countries;
  • An analysis of existing health data standards and recommendations regarding their applicability to specific domains;
  • A framework for mapping standard to eHealth systems and services, enabling the identifications of gaps;
  • A rationale and approach to health data standards adoption and implementation at country level;
  • An implementation guide for eHealth data standards to support country adoption and capacity development.

Professionals from countries in the Americas, representing the fields of health information technology, health information management, or health information policy, will be participating in the technical consultation.

The meeting is part of a series carried out by the World Health Organization (WHO), which includes the participation of individuals representing various stakeholder groups including, but not limited to, health data Standards Development Organizations and their associated Joint Initiative Council, WHO Regional Offices, Institutions, and key implementers concerned with the development and utilization of health data standards.

In the Americas, the meeting is developed in the context of the Regional eHealth Strategy and Plan of Action (2012-2017), which is envisaged as a means of improving health services access and quality. Through its objective 3.2, it seeks to “promote the standardized interoperability of health systems (organizational and technological interoperability).”