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Regenstrief releasing new version of lingua franca needed for electronic health info exchange
Date:6/3/2010

h information exchange. The researcher clinicians found they could receive data from various INPC member institutions but that the clinical content was difficult to interpret because each used a different code for the same test or observation so it was like receiving messages in French, Spanish and Italian when all they could understand was English.

They decided to develop a lingua franca and LOINC was born. From the beginning it has been a free and open system, encouraging additions, comments and feedback. Two new versions of LOINC are issued annually, with more than 2,000 new terms for tests or clinical observations per release. These new additions are based on requests from end users.

Over the past seven years, more than 130 health-care organizations around the world, including the Centers for Disease Control, the U.S. departments of defense and veterans affairs and individual hospitals have made submissions. In the past two years, users from 131 different countries downloaded the standard more than 23,000 times. LOINC encourages and supports translation of terms and documentation into foreign languages. Currently, portions of the database have been translated into Simplified Chinese, Spanish, French, and Italian and both German and Estonian versions of the documentation also exist.

"With support from the U.S. government and other organizations, the Regenstrief Institute continues to develop LOINC as an open, freely available standard. LOINC's growing worldwide adoption is a testament to both the need for a common language and the success of this open approach," said Dr. Vreeman.


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Contact: Cindy Fox Aisen
caisen@iupui.edu
317-274-7722
Indiana University School of Medicine
Source:Eurekalert

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