Blog from November, 2018

Dear all,

Following on from all of the previous announcements providing early visibility of the transition plan, SNOMED International would now like to provide technical details of the planned migration from Stated Relationships to OWL files.  This plan has been discussed and agreed with numerous stakeholders from the community, and will be implemented over the course of the next two International Releases, as follows:

January 2019:

  • The International Edition package (packageA) will include both active Stated Relationships plus a partial OWL file containing a subset of the OWLAxioms.  This file will contain both OWLAxiom + OWLOntology refsets combined into one OWLExpression file, in each section of the International Release package (Full, Snapshot and Delta):
    • sct2_sRefset_OWLExpressionFull_INT_20190131.txt
    • sct2_sRefset_OWLExpressionSnapshot_INT_20190131.txt
    • sct2_sRefset_OWLExpressionDelta_INT_20190131.txt
  • We will also publish a separate optional package (packageB) containing a complete set of OWL records (including all Axioms - sufficient, transitivity etc) set to January 2019 effectiveTimes, as if this was the complete OWL file that we will introduce in July 2019.  This package would also contain all stated relationships from the previous release (July 2018 International Edition) marked as inactive (any Stated Relationships from the next editing cycle will be included in the complete OWL file).  
  • packageB will therefore act as a second Demonstration release (similar to the September 2018 package), allowing everyone to thoroughly trial how the July 2019 Int Edition will work for them in practice.  It will, therefore, retain the same nomenclature and formatting as the Sept 2018 Demo release, with everything x prefixed and labelled to warn against use in Production clinical systems.
  • packageB will be published in MLDS alongside the International Edition, and will therefore be available to everyone who has access to the International Edition, so that they can choose to either download it or not.
  • Release Notes will be updated to clearly explain all of the above.

July 2019:

  • The International Edition package (packageCwill include both inactive Stated Relationships plus a complete OWL file (combined) from July 2019 effectiveTime onwards (ie) with NO history of OWL records that weren’t included in the Jan 2019 International Edition package itself (as opposed to the optional package).
  • We will also publish a separate optional package (packageD) containing an OWL (combined) Delta file, identifying which of the concepts have had modelling changes in relation to packageB.
  • No support for Stated Relationships will be provided from this point onwards, however we will continue to include the inactivated Stated Relationships in future International Edition packages, until it is decided that this is no longer required.
  • Anyone who isn’t yet ready to move forward with OWL will therefore remain on the January 2019 International Edition until they are ready to update to OWL with the July 2019 version onwards.
  • Release Notes will be updated to clearly explain all of the above.

If you have any questions regarding any of these upcoming changes, please contact SNOMED International immediately at with “OWL transition question” in the subject line.   

Thanks very much for your time,

Kind regards

Andrew Atkinson  |  Release Manager