openEHR RELEASE 1.0.1

The result of 14 months’ review, implementation and testing, this
release is a major milestone, correcting and improving the openEHR
Release 1.x platform. We believe Release 1.0.1 to be a stable base for
ongoing implementation and forthcoming specifications, including the
Template Model, EHR Extract, Security, Archetype Query Language, CEN
EN13606 integration and services (in cooperation with the HL7/OMG HSSP
project). It also provides a foundation for tools and systems for the
development and governance of clinical models, including openEHR
archetypes, templates and terminology subsets.
Together this forms the “openEHR Health Computing Platform”, as shown on
the diagram on the openEHR home page. Please see the links on the home
page for the release notes, specifications, online UML and XML-schemas
corresponding to this release.

As Chairman of the Architecture Review Board of the Foundation, I would
like to acknowledge my fellow members and all the people who have
contributed to the ongoing development and refinement of the
specifications, including their implementation in formalisms such as
XML-schema, and various programming languages – see the project team page –

There are numerous others who have contributed on the lists, in the
rooms of universities, standards meetings and conferences, and in many
other ways. However, I would particularly like to acknowledge,
personally, the clinical vision and tireless effort of my colleagues, Dr
Sam Heard, Deputy Chairman of the Foundation, and Dr Dipak Kalra,
Chairman of the Clinical Review Board, who have always sought to ensure
that the work of the openEHR Foundation remains vitally relevant to
clinical practice in all settings.

Recognition is also due to Professor David Ingram, chairman of the
openEHR Foundation, and head of the Centre for Health Informatics and
Multi-professional Education (CHIME) at UCL (Archway campus), who a)
coined the term “openEHR”, b) has maintained a scientific and
educational vision on what things like openEHR can do (hence our
obsession with implementation), and c) has provided ongoing material
support of openEHR. Along with the long-term human effort – thanks are
especially due also to David Lloyd – CHIME has provided the servers and
system administration resource that keeps openEHR going online.

The future will be exciting. Over the coming months, further pieces of
the health computing platform will fall into place, including (as
mentioned above):
* the Template Object Model – a standardised object model of
openEHR templates, along with a dADL and XML syntax specification;
* the openEHR EHR Extract specification – a model of Extracts for
use with openEHR and other systems;
* a security model based on CEN EN13606 part 4;
* a query language for archetyped data (provisionally called ‘AQL’);
* standardised service and programming interfaces for the EHR and
related services, including the “virtual EHR”, EHR service, demographic
service, archetype service and others.
An important part of the work ahead is the integration of openEHR with
de jure standards, including CEN EN13606, the HL7/OMG Services work, HL7

A final note on the identifier of the latest release – “1.0.1”. This
release contains 51 Change Requests, and as software people will know,
no-one creates a ‘minor’ release with so many CRs. There are a few
reasons for this, the main one being that we originally had no real idea
of how much feedback we would get from the community following the
publication of Release 1.0. We initially thought it would be relatively
small, but it turned out to be far greater than expected, and I am now
sure that every line of every specification has been not only
scrutinised but implemented in some way by someone out there. Rather
than confuse everyone by continually revising the identifier for the
‘correction’ release, we kept it at 1.0.1, with the result that it
encapsulates more change than usual for a ‘minor’ release. However,
semantically it fulfills its purpose: correction of errors and improved
textual explanations. As intended in the two-level modelling methodology
of openEHR, the changes to the core platform specifications will be kept
to an absolute minimum over the coming years; further releases will
mainly be about additions rather than changes. Implementers will have a
direct say in all future change proposals.

We hope the work of the openEHR Foundation is useful to you, and we look
forward to your growing involvement in its inclusive and evolving community.

*Thomas Beale*
/Chief Technology Officer/ Ocean Informatics

Chair Architectural Review Board, /open/EHR Foundation
Honorary Research Fellow, University College London

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