Just presented 1 of 4 talks at medinfo 2015 in São Paulo.

Check out @siljelb’s Tweet: https://twitter.com/siljelb/status/634063598558515200?s=09

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

openEHR: A Game Changer Comes of Age | Open Health News


Posted in global stuff | Leave a comment

Thank you for your support :) Read on…

I’ve been elected as a member of the Management Board, together with Ian McNicoll. I just wanted to say thank you. Here’s a news item from the University of Auckland you can get more details from:

NZ researcher elected to openEHR Management Board – The University of Auckland.

And the formal openEHR link

We had our kick-off meeting last week and the amount of activity is amazing. I’m really excited about this!

Posted in global stuff | Leave a comment

Linking Health Information to Computational Models using openEHR – The University of Auckland

Linking Health Information to Computational Models using openEHR – The University of Auckland.

Hi everyone, here’s a recent prezo I gave at my own institute around integrating clinical and engineering worlds…With an embedded underwater adventure story in it 😉 Hope you’ll find interesting and even useful…

early 2000s submarine Caroline of Institute of Nautical Archaeology around Aegean coast of Turkey.

Posted in local stuff | Leave a comment

A new hope: upcoming openEHR Elections (ACTION NEEDED!)

Dear openEHRers,

The Foundation is about to undergo a significant change shortly and will have first democratic elections to constitute a management board. Proper (still very short) anouncement here.

Basically 4 members will be elected (2 industrial and 2 individual) by members who sign-up to the members website (need to pay Euro 15). Nominations will be closing end of Jan 2015 and voting will open on the 1st Feb 2015 and close on the 28th Feb 2015. I have put my hand up and now asking you to support me.

Have a look at the list of nominees together with short bio and statement of intents.

Among other things I will work hard to move forward interests of New Zealand health IT Sector with my other hats as vice-chair of HL7 New Zealand and a member of Health Information Standards Organisation (HISO) and the Sector Architects Group.

May be force be with us all!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Season’s greetings for 2014 – End of year news

Hi everyone,

While packing my luggage for a family holiday in Oz I felt the urge to celebrate end of this year with you and share some news and wishes for 2015.

People keep asking me why such a great thing like openEHR hasn’t taken on the world. Fair enough – I hear repeatedly from people new to openEHR approach and mostly those coming from other sectors. I feel this is mostly akin to our community not being as commercially focussed as similar other SDOs and, to be honest, it has some learning curve. The best anti-example would be FHIR’s amazing success and adoption: simple to learn (I mean it!) and governed by HL7 (do I need any further qualifier here?). Well I have some good news, the openEHR community is bootstrapping itself and now preparing for first democratic elections. Under the hood a much more industry-driven and commercially sensible composure is being adopted and the four programs (specification, software, modelling and localisation) are putting in considerable effort to kick start some good work. Indeed some great work have already started mid year – thanks to funding from our industry partners there is intense Archetype development in progress. I think these are good first steps in the right direction.

What’s happening in New Zealand? I have previously posted (more than enough maybe!) quite a lot about the Gestational Diabetes Registry (an end-to-end openEHR implementation in collaboration with Counties Manukau DHB and Diabetes Projects Trust) and some modelling work with the National Cardiac Registry. Apart from these nothing much (that I’m aware of) really. Since the publication of the Interoperability Reference Architecture which depicted use of Archetypes to create a reference library of clinical concepts (called the Exchange Content Model) initial plans to share NEHTA CKM instance with Aussies didn’t happen. According to this any wire format, such as HL7 v2 message or CDA, would be derived from single source of truth: the Content Model. This would practically be a Kiwi CKM environment where we adopt existing international models and then adapt or create our own content. All I can say is the government is currently waiting to see what comes out of the collaborative effort (to work out a common Allergy/Intolerance Model) between FHIR and openEHR. Obviously the Exchange Content Model can be expressed by FHIR Resources and Profiles too. But I think the right way to approach this would be to use openEHR modelling for logical representation of the kiwi health record and then create corresponding FHIR Profiles (including Resources of course but also terminology bindings and other context constraints) from openEHR machinery. FHIR will be the wire format like v2 or CDA.

***Some FHIR musings below*** These are my personal thoughts

FHIR faces the same modelling challenges as openEHR but I think less equipped (from a modelling perspective) than openEHR. For example the distinct separation of Reference Model and Archetypes is traded-off for simplicity and in FHIR you’d see Resources (roughly corresponding to Archetypes) like Composition, List etc. which are expressed at RM level in openEHR. So you can still express stuff but when it comes to dealing with longevity and complexity of clinical information openEHR’s multi-level modelling is a more elegant approach. But having implemented FHIR myself this year at the HL7 New Zealand FHIR event I must say it is SO attractive! First of all the “implementer friendly” motto is not a lip service (which I thought it was before) and what is astonishing is any Web developer who’s comfortable with modern web development tools etc. can just do it. They indeed become fanatical about it. How cool is that?

So my take from this year is that FHIR is a great way to implement health information exhange and I think openEHR better suits to health IT environments where a high level of semantic precision is needed – such as advanced decision support or an integrated health information system or research/population health platform. This view has matured a lot since I got into Biomedical research – some of you may already have noticed I started a new role at Auckland Bioengineering Institute (while still part-time with NIHI). There is fascinating work going on, both in NZ and around the world, what I’d describe as Virtual Physiological Human. Basically to create a digital representation of human including ALL processes. I would strongly advise that you have a peek at this video. Digital Patient is also a related and popular topic where openEHR can be a good fit. Indeed the VPH-Share project funded by the European Comission has made extensive use of Archetypes to link biomedical domain with clinical data.

This brings the crucial importance of aligning content between FHIR and openEHR communities – having experienced the joint Allergy/Intolerance modelling effort and after a chat with Grahame Grieve this week it is clear it is not the technical differences of the two formalisms but the way their communities approach to modelling can be a real problem. So what I’m saying is if clinicians agree on a certain way to model things both FHIR and openEHR can accommodate it – no big deal. The issue is how to get the two organisations to the same requirements – this would be a challenge. Obviously CKM is a great tool for this and I hope FHIR community will realise it. I decided to put some effort in mapping existing Archetypes to FHIR resources in parallel with joint modelling efforts. If we fail to achieve this alignment, a golden opportunity will be lost – forever…Therefore my wish is to set openEHR on FHIR this year!

Featuring Grahame Grieve, David Hay, David Fallas and Koray Atalag

Unofficial Auckland HL7 – openEHR Summit: Featuring Grahame Grieve, David Hay, David Fallas and Koray Atalag

Merry Xmas and a very happy new year indeed…

Posted in global stuff, local stuff, other standards | Tagged | Leave a comment

A great week to remember – for life!

We had 13th of our annual Health Informatics New Zealand Conference in Auckland; always great but this one being greatest: more than 630 delegates!

The week kicked off by pre-conference workshops and we (as HL7 New Zealand where I’m vice-chair) had a day-long event (link to full program here) themed around mobile platforms, security and FHIR. We had the privilage of having Josh Mandel from Harvard who is the inventor of Smart on FHIR. It was pretty exciting for me because for the first time I got my hands dirty (or rather hot) on creating a FHIR resource and then implementing a smartphone app (our Web developer Stephen Boswell). All in all within 2 days we had a working app which captures anonymous feedback from patients and their relatives/friends about a hospital stay. How cool is that? I always thought FHIR’s ‘implementer friendly’ mantra was a bit lip service but now I got it. It looks as if it will be impossible to take FHIR away from Stephen after this experience who had even not heard about it a couple days prior to implementing. Now take home for openEHR is the importance of having a public test server and some real examples available to developers. Also based on my modelling experience (which was a simple questionnaire but had additional languages: Chinese and Korean) I’d say archetypes are still far better way of creating clinical models – in particular because of great tooling and multilinguality comes out of the box (where in FHIR I had to use extensions which resulted in 1061 lines of XML code written by hand!). Here’s the full Prezo (we will post link to App when we put it to Apple Store and Google Play).

I’ve presented and posted here a couple times about the Gestational Diabetes Registry before but I also presented a scientific paper at the main conference:

Last but not the least at the end of the conference I’ve learned that I won the 2014 Clinton Bedogni Prize for Open Systems – mainly for my contributions towards development and promotion of open standards (openEHR and HL7) but also for open source software work that includes GastrOS and PATHOS-WEB. It was announced at New Zealand Open Source Awards gala dinner in Wellington on 12 Nov 2014 – unfortunately I couldnt’ make it because of the conference and previously arranged important meetings 😦 It’s $10,000 cash prize which is great before Xmas! This is a huge motivation for me to keep on doing this and definitely something we as a family will never forget (planning to explore east coast of Australia all the way up to Cairns during the break).

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments