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HL7 Style Guide for Writers
Last revised August 26, 2014
Comments or questions? Contact andrea@HL7.org

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Reference

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URLs

Omit the[ |about:blank]{+}http://+ from URLs.


When writing the URL or email addresses, HL7 should always be capitalized. Otherwise, unfamiliar users might confuse the L for a 1 and type in H-seventeen into the address bar.
[www.HL7.orglaura@HL7.org

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laura@HL7.org


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Working Group Program Titles

Set off program codes from program titles by setting them in a colored box:
W16 Version 2.7 Control Specialist Certification Test Preparation



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Terminology

Use this...

Not this...

Notes

 


i.e.

Don't use. Use namely, specifically, or recast the sentence.

"click X"

"click on X"

Click Submit, not Click on Submit.

am

a.m.AM
A.M.

 


canceled
canceling

cancelled, cancelling

 


cont.

con't.
cont'd.

 


co-chair

Co-Chair

Capitalize when referring to a person's title, don't capitalize when referring to the role in general

datasets

Datasets

 


data type

datatype

 


eHealth

e-Health
ehealth

 


email

e-mail
Email
E-mail

 

 

 

 





etc.

et cetera
etcetera
&c

 


fax

FAX
Fax

 


for example

e.g.

Avoid Latin abbreviations (except etc.).

HL7

 


Use in referring to standards

Health Level Seven InternationalHL7 International
HL7

Health Level 7
HL Seven

Use full name on first reference to the organizationUse "HL7" on subsequent references
Use "HL7 International" to distinguish the organization from the standards

healthcare

health care

 


implementation guide guide

Implementation Guide

Capitalize when referring to official title but not a general reference. This: The HL7 Implementation Guide for CDA Release 2 - Level 3: Emergency Medical Services. Not this: This Implementation Guide covers emergency medical services.

inpatient

in-patient

 


internet

Internet
InterNet

 


KB

KbK bytes
Kbytes
K.B.
Kb

Abbreviation for "kilobyte." Include a space after the number: "30 KB."

labeled
labeling

labelled, labelling

 


log in (verb)
login (adjective)

logon
log on

 


log out (verb)
logout (adjective)

log off
logoff

 


long- (adjective)
long (noun),

 


Adjective: "long-distance," "long-lived," "long-term."
Noun: "long distance."

low-
low

 


"Low-end," "low-grade," "low-level."

MB

MbM bytes
Mbytes
M.B.
Mb

Abbreviation for "megabyte." Include a space after the number: "30 MB."

mHealth

m-Health
mhealth

 


Meaningful UseMeaningful Use Stage 2

meaningful use"Meaningful Use"MUMeaningful Use Phase 2
Meaningful Use II

 


NA

N/A, n/a
n.a.
na

"Not applicable" or "not available."

non-profit

nonprofit

 


online (adj.)

on-line
on line

"help is available online"

outpatient

out-patient

 


pm

p.m.PM
P.M.

 


parenthesis (singular)
parentheses (plural)

 

 



pre-

 


Only hyphenate compounds formed with "pre-" when the second word starts with "e": "preregistration," "pre-existing."

press (a key)

hit
depress

 


preventive

preventative

 


re-

 


Only hyphenate compounds formed with "re-" when the verb starts with "e": "reboot," "reinstall," "re-enable."

standard

Standard

CDA standard

status (singular)
statuses (plural)

 

 



type (text)

enter
type in

 


use

utilize

 


web page

Webpage
webpage

 


website

Website
web site

 


-wide

 


Words such as departmentwide, hospitalwide, statewide and worldwide do not require a hyphen.

working group meetingWGM

Working Group Meeting

Spell out first use

x-ray

X-ray
X ray