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General Guidelines

The membership is reminded that ANSI rules dictate that all individuals who were in a normative consensus group MUST be included in the initial consensus group when the same document goes out for a subsequent normative ballot.  Thus, if a document is going out for a 2nd normative ballot, all individuals who were active in the consensus group (casting either an affirmative, negative or abstain) for the 1st normative ballot are automatically subscribed as members for the subsequent normative consensus group. 


HL7 will conduct these ballots according to its procedure for electronic balloting. Individuals who sign up for a consensus group will be notified by e-mail when the ballot package is available. They will download the document from the HL7 web server and will enter their votes and comments using the HL7 Ballot Desktop.



HL7 members and others who are materially affected by any of the proposed standards and wish to participate in these ballots must join the respective consensus groups by logging on to the Ballot Desktop at the following URL:    


All voting related activity – joining consensus groups, downloading or reviewing ballot content, uploading comments and voting – is done through the Ballot Desktop. In addition, non-members wishing to take part in this or any HL7 ballot must use the Ballot Desktop to register.  Those non-members wishing to use this option are referred to the Paid Participation in HL7 Ballots Instructions posted on the HL7 Ballot Desktop.


All ballot dates are inclusive: votes cannot be cast before the beginning date or after the ending date listed for a ballot.  Please note that all times are tracked in the Eastern Time Zone (US).  If you have problems with the ballot desktop, joining, or voting, please contact the HL7 Director of Technical Publications ( or Director of Technical Services ( before the closing of the ballot.

Negative Votes on Normative Ballots:  Members are reminded of the following rules from HL7 Essential Requirements regarding the submission of negative votes on normative ballots:

  • Submission with Comments – Negative public review comments or comments accompanying negative ballots shall be submitted as an attachment and clearly reference the particular ballot items(s) to which it pertains.
  • Submission without Comments – A negative public review submitted without rationale or a negative ballot not accompanied by comments shall not be considered.  Such ballots or public review comments will be recorded as a "negative without comment" for the purposes of establishing quorum and reporting to ANSI. However, these ballots shall not be factored into the numerical requirements for approval. No effort shall be made to solicit comments from the submitter of a negative without comment.

Important Notes

IMPORTANT NOTE on Balloting Rules: The HL7 Essential Requirements (ER) is now separate from the HL7 Governance and Operations Manual (GOM); the rules under which balloting takes place have changed slightly.  These changes can be summarized as follows:

  • The definition for the Consensus Group for Normative ballots (ER 02.04.04 –The Consensus Group) - both initial and subsequent ballots - "shall consist of those individuals, members or nonmembers, who expressed an interest by enrolling for a given ballot."  For complete details, please refer to the indicated section.
  • In addition, please note that any subsequent ballot of material previously balloted at the normative level will supersede any and all previous ballots. Voters will need to cast a new ballot with comments.
  • As a reminder, the quorum and approval levels stipulated in the ER for Normative and the GOM will apply to the ballot pools.  They are as follows:
    • Informative Ballots – No quorum requirement; 60% affirmative votes for approval.
    • DSTU Ballots – No quorum requirement; 60% affirmative votes for approval.
    • Normative Ballots – Minimum 10 HL7 members in ballot pool for quorum with majority returning votes; 75% affirmative votes for approval.
    • Comment Only Ballots – No quorum requirement.


Reconciliation Rules: The balloting of all items listed in this announcement is contingent upon completion of the appropriate ballot reconciliation activities as indicated in GOM sections 13.02.04, Handling Comment, for Review ballots, and ER section 02.02.07, Confirmation of Previous Ballot Reconciliation, for Normative ballots.


Unique Ballot IDs: Each ballot document has a unique Ballot ID that can be found following its descriptive text. In addition, updated ballot comment spreadsheets will be available on the balloting website at the time the ballots open for voting.

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