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A desirable function of an NRC is to act as a resource and advisory body for Affiliates . It is crucial for successful national adoption of SNOMED CT that Affiliates are able to obtain the required education, training and guidance. SNOMED International delivers a range of education and training resources, which are described in later sections. However, Affiliates may require further guidance on implementation aspects, on customization, or on SNOMED CT education for specific user groups. An NRC should clarify how it will support requests for education and implementation consultancy.


In order to provide the most efficient support to national SNOMED CT users, the NRC should ensure that the available implementation and training resources are focused on the specific types of SNOMED CT users. The NRC must therefore have insight into the different aspects related to SNOMED CT implementation and use, know about the different types of SNOMED CT users, and understand the role and needs each of these groups of users with respect to SNOMED CT knowledge and skills.

Figure 7 illustrates three types of SNOMED CT users who have different needs with respect to learning about SNOMED CT. The knowledge required for users and professionals related to clinical data entry differ from the knowledge required for designers and developers. Moreover, users responsible for information management require more cross-disciplinary knowledge than healthcare professionals, being responsible for reconciling user needs, the terminological framework and system setup. Within the different types of SNOMED CT users there are various user roles, and the individuals in those user roles need to learn about SNOMED CT at various levels of detail and with different points of departure. These generic user types are intentionally broad. Individual Members may identify other user categories and subdivisions relevant to national circumstances taking account of different approaches to eHealth strategy and SNOMED CT implementation.

Figure 7 Three broad groups of SNOMED CT Users


Designers and developers
(of IT systems)

Terminology Developers

Educators and trainers

Clinical information entry

Decision support systems

Concept model designers

Clinical information curation

Retrieval and analysis

Content authors

Clinical information utilization

Communication standards



Terminology services

Map developers


Terminology artifact development

Subsets and constraint developers



Release process managers

A description and examples of the different user groups can be found below:

Users are those engaged in entry, storage, retrieval and/or reuse of clinical information.


  • Healthcare practitioners (clinicians, nurses, therapists, etc.)
  • Medical coders and secretaries engaged in clinical data entry
  • Clinical knowledge providers and publishers
  • Clinical researchers
  • Information analysts
  • Managers of migration from pre-existing data to SNOMED CT representation

Designers and Developers are those designing, developing, configuring or deploying software systems that use SNOMED CT. SNOMED International has developed a Vendor Guide to support vendors understanding SNOMED CT implementation:


  • Healthcare solution providers – designers and software developers
  • System integrators
  • Researchers and innovators
  • Clinical experts and others involved in customizing user interfaces and data entry protocols

TerminologyDevelopers are organizations developing and distributing content and other artifacts such as subsets, maps, etc.


  • National Release Centers
  • Other institutions working with terminologies
  • Researchers and innovators

Educators and trainers are those people involved with education and training of people involved with implementation and use of SNOMED CT.


  • People with the sufficient knowledge to educate and train people within a specific user group and at the level required for the actual user.