SNOMED CT is the most comprehensive clinical terminology in use around the world. It enables clinicians to consistently record high-quality clinical content in electronic health records. SNOMED CT provides a standardized way to represent clinical phrases captured by the clinician, and enables the automatic interpretation and querying of these. The SNOMED CT terminology has unmatched breadth and depth and continues to grow and evolve, enabling clinicians to record data with enhanced accuracy and relevance. SNOMED CT is mapped to a range of other international standards and is used in more than eighty countries. To learn more about SNOMED CT please visit the SNOMED CT 5 step briefing and Why SNOMED CT.
SNOMED International is a not-for-profit organization that owns and maintains SNOMED CT. SNOMED International is governed by representatives from more than 40 Member countries/territories and has participation from a strong community of experts. To learn more about SNOMED International and Membership please visit Who we are and Get SNOMED CT.
The International Patient Summary (IPS) is a minimal and non-exhaustive set of basic clinical data of a patient, specialty-agnostic, condition-independent, but readily usable by all clinicians. The primary use case for the IPS is to support cross-border, unscheduled patient care. However, it has the potential to be used in many other use cases where the patient crosses information systems, like travel between provinces, cities, or organizations that use a different Health Information System and require a summary for immediate care. The IPS is maintained by a collaboration of different Standard Development Organizations including ISO, CEN, HL7 International, IHE International, and SNOMED International. To learn more about the IPS please visit the International Patient Summary and the HL7 FHIR IPS Implementation Guide.
Since 2019, SNOMED International has made a free set of SNOMED CT codes available (the HL7 IPS free set), as part of the Global Patient Set (GPS) to support the implementation of the HL7 FHIR IPS specification.
The new IPS Terminology is the next evolution of the HL7 IPS free set, providing advanced terminology features for non-Affiliates to use in their IPS implementations.
The IPS Terminology User Guide is designed to support implementers in non-Member regions, who plan to offer IPS functionality in a healthcare system, and need to understand the features, capabilities and limitations of the IPS Terminology package. This user guide provides an overview of the IPS Terminology's scope and features, how to implement the IPS Terminology in a terminology server, some IPS Terminology use cases, and how to upgrade to a full SNOMED CT edition if additional terminology content is required. The user guide also provides links to more detailed documentation and instructions, where relevant.
The design, content, and implementation techniques for SNOMED CT are described elsewhere - e.g. in the SNOMED CT Document Library and the SNOMED CT Implementation Support Portal. The design of the IPS information structures and their binding to SNOMED CT value sets are also documented elsewhere - e.g. in the HL7 FHIR IPS Implementation Guide.
The IPS Terminology and this user guide are provided to support non-Affiliates (i.e. users without a license to a full SNOMED CT edition), who need to implement an IPS solution for use cases such as patient data entry, interoperable information exchange, and simple data analytics. Non-Affiliates will be able to implement the basic features of SNOMED CT with this free resource.
The guide contains an overall description of the IPS Terminology and its features for decision-makers and it contains technical documentation for implementers.
All users either in a SNOMED International Member region or with an Affiliate license to a complete SNOMED CT edition, should NOT use the IPS Terminology. Instead, they should implement their IPS solutions using a full edition of SNOMED CT. To share IPS data with non-Affiliates, licensed users may choose to refer to the IPS Reference Set, available as a separate download on MLDS. This reference set identifies the subset of key concepts from the IPS Terminology and is available as a supplementary package from SNOMED International's MLDS service.