The mission of the Patient Care Working Group (PCWG) is to define the requirements and to design and validate standards specifications and implementation guides for the capture, communication, and use of information related to the management, execution and quality of care provision.


The scope for Patient Care is a subset of the healthcare delivery and management processes. The scope includes activities related to assessing and evaluating the patient/client/member, establishing the diagnosis/problem, developing and managing a plan of care/service/action, administering care or treatment based on the plan, documenting the administration of the plan of care, managing compliance and exception reporting, and reporting of clinical results/outcomes. The scope also includes defining how clinical information and pathways/protocols are supported in the communication as well as support of data exchange for concurrent/retrospective quality and/or outcomes analysis and management.

The PCWG provides a forum for all stakeholders concerned with clinical content related to patient care (including child health) information.  The WG works with and provides patient care guidance and recommendations to other WGs. The PCWG takes into account the experience of groups outside of HL7 (e.g., Integrating the Healthcare Enterprise (IHE) Patient Care Coordination domain, SNOMED International).   Stakeholders include physicians, nurses, and other clinicians; healthcare technology experts; vendors; regulators; public health organizations; healthcare strategic organizations (e.g., US DHHS Office of the National Coordinator (ONC) and its initiatives, Dutch National ICT Institute for Healthcare (Nictiz), Canada Health Infoway, Australian Digital Health Agency (ADHA); as well as other groups.

The domain of Patient Care includes such activities as

  • Care planning and plans, including goal setting and evaluation
  • Care coordination, including team definition, transfers, referrals, and communication
  • Health concerns and problems
  • Procedures
  • Allergies, intolerances, adverse event reporting

The responsibilities include support of efforts to design specifications to support these activities in all HL7 technical platforms, including V2, CDA, and FHIR.

The scope does not assume stewardship of specifications generaed by other HL7 workgroups. A goal of this committee is to continue to take advantage of and extend messages developed by other HL7 committees rather than develop redundant and independently maintained communication artifacts.

Relationships with Other Groups

Relationships with other HL7 Working Groups

Patient care has a long tradition of maintaining relationships with other working groups within HL7. This stems from the creation of Special Interest groups for clinical specialties, which obtained the Work Group status over the past several years. In 2017, the PCWG formally incorporated the active projects of the Child Health WG and aim to serve as reference for providers and patients of all ages. In addition, some other Work Groups have similar interest or work items for which it is effective to join efforts to share expertise, or the work crosses domains.

In particular, the following relationships exist:

  • Patient Administration (PAWG)
  • Pharmacy WG
  • Emergency Care WG
  • Structured Documents (SDWG) – and the CDA document series
  • CIC and the creation of domain analysis models related to patient care topics
  • Public Health and Emergency Response (PHER) issues
  • EHR WG – collaboration around EHR/PHR elements
  • Biomedical Research & Regulation (BRR)
  • Vocabulary WG, via our vocabulary facilitator
  • Clinical Decision Support (CDS)
  • Fast Health Interoperability Resources FHIR
  • Clinical Information Modeling Initiative (CIMI)
  • Clinical Genomics WG
  • Clinical Quality Information WG

External relationships

External groups in which HL7 Patient Care WG is collaborating:

  • IHE Patient Care Coordination
  • ISO TC215 (DCM TS13972)

Approved by PC Thursday, 19 January 2023.

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