Hello IC members.
In the last two HL7 WGM's it has become increasingly clear to me that there is a lack of clarity or consistent understanding on what it means to be developing standards intended for international adoption. Given the HL7 is positioned as an International SDO, many of us can be forgiven for presuming that all work done within the SDO should be developed in a way that allows the specifications to be transferable to, and usable by, other countries. However, practically speaking, it is also clear that the nature of the work being done is driven by the compelling need of participant communities to achieve strategic objectives in terms of their operational context. Given the preponderance of member representation from the United States, combined with the incentives, directives and accompanying (welcome) funding arising from ONC, and proposed rule making by HHS, this often means the business problems to be solved have a distinctly national, rather than international, perspective to them.
While International Affiliate members play very key and supportive roles in the work being done, and while International Affiliates are able to vote on resulting work, these alone are not enough to ensure that specifications are readily "transferable" to other national realms. There seems to be a lack of organizational guidance and "mindfulness", in some cases, about what the characteristics of a truly international standards specification should be (including both what is and is not desirable).
As a returning participant to the HL7 Architecture Review Board I have proposed a work item for the ARB notionally called "Characteristics of Realm-Transferable Standards". This is probably not the appropriate title, perhaps it should be "Characteristics of Candidate International Standards".
Here is my ask of the IC: ARB would like to know if the International Council would like to be a co-sponsor of this PSS, and of course have the opportunity to shape and participate in the resulting project, should it be approved.
I realize this deserves more discussion by the IC, but it would be very helpful if we could have some Q&A here by our IC members on the nature of the project, its value, and how it should proceed. I am also proposing that this be an agenda item for our WGM in Montreal in May.
Your thoughts? Ron G. Parker