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ECRI Institute Adds 4,000 New Terms to Universal Medical Device Nomenclature System™

Free license gives access to 24,544 terms, including genetic testing and device software

PLYMOUTH MEETING, Pa., July 8 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- ECRI Institute's Universal Medical Device Nomenclature System™,  the most comprehensive medical device taxonomy, announces the expansion of its database to include thousands of new terms for medical devices, genetic tests and medical device software.

The 2010 Universal Medical Device Nomenclature System (UMDNS) now contains 24,544 terms covering the expanse of medical devices and equipment used for modern healthcare delivery, including information systems, software, in vitro diagnostics, molecular and genetic tests, capital equipment, implantable devices, assistive devices, and consumables.

In the past year alone, ECRI Institute, an independent nonprofit that researches the best approaches to improving patient care, has added more than 4,000 terms for genetic tests. By the end of 2010, ECRI will release many additional terms for software used with medical devices.  

"In this era of health information exchange, standardizing data is critical," says Vivian H. Coates, vice president, information services and health technology assessment, ECRI Institute. "Our proprietary nomenclature system fills this need for medical devices and related equipment and consumables."

ECRI Institute's Universal Medical Device Nomenclature System is licensed free of charge to regulatory agencies, hospitals and health systems, manufacturers, and distributors who use the nomenclature to support procurement, asset management and maintenance, hazard and recall tracking, patient safety activities, indexing of literature, spend analysis, quality improvement, and systems-level benchmarking.

Numerous U.S. organizations and agencies have endorsed UMDNS for use in their software applications. The Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society recommends using ECRI Institute's nomenclature in its Manufacturer Disclosure Statement for Medical Device Security (MDS2) form. The Committee on Data Standards for Patient Safety of the Institute of Medicine recommended UMDNS as one of the core terminologies for the electronic health record.

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, the U.S. Department for Defense, Premier, Inc., and vendors of computerized maintenance management systems and enterprise asset management systems developed and implement applications using the Universal Medical Device Nomenclature System.

"ECRI Institute uses UMDNS to encode device-related concepts in Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality's National Guideline Clearinghouse™ and the National Quality Measures Clearinghouse™, which are developed and maintained by ECRI Institute under contract," says Coates. "We also incorporate the five-digit Universal Medical Device Code into our own device-related information products and patient safety applications for mapping and standardizing of terminology."

The Universal Medical Device Nomenclature System is used internationally by ministries of health to provide common terminology for managing clinical systems across healthcare systems, by the World Health Organization in its tool for resource allocation in developing countries, and in Asia as the foundation for the Asian Medical Device Nomenclature System.  The 2010 Spanish translation has recently been added to the ECRI Web site.

For more information about Universal Medical Device Nomenclature System, or to obtain a free license, visit, call (610) 825-6000, ext. 5889, or mail to ECRI Institute, 5200 Butler Pike, Plymouth Meeting, PA 19462 USA. ECRI's European office can be contacted at; ECRI's Asia-Pacific office can be contacted at; and ECRI's Middle Eastern office can be contacted at

ECRI Institute (, a nonprofit organization, dedicates itself to bringing the discipline of applied scientific research to healthcare to discover which medical procedures, devices, drugs, and processes are best to enable improved patient care. As pioneers in this science for more than 40 years, ECRI Institute marries experience and independence with the objectivity of evidence-based research. Strict conflict-of-interest guidelines ensure objectivity. ECRI Institute is designated as a Collaborating Center of the World Health Organization and an Evidence-based Practice Center by the U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. ECRI Institute PSO, listed as a federally certified Patient Safety Organization by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, strives to achieve the highest levels of safety and quality in healthcare by collecting and analyzing patient safety information and sharing lessons learned and best practices.

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