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  • Why is your opinion important to us?

As a clinical terminology, it is essential that SNOMED CT has input from clinicians to ensure that it remains relevant and up to date with the ever changing face of healthcare. Your opinion as clinicians is therefore very important to us to highlight the necessary changes and updates to the terminology itself, and also to advise us on derivative products (maps and subsets) which can be provided to support the implementation of the terminology

  • The evolution of clinical engagement 

SNOMED CT has always had input from clinical groups throughout its history. Historically, this has been provided through special interest groups (SIG's), groups dedicated to specific clinical areas. The groups have been successful, but have been limited in their number of specialties covered; Dentistry, Nursing, Pathology and Laboratory medicine, Anaesthesia, Family/General Practice, Pharmacy. In addition to the clinical SIG's, there are also two functional SIG's covering Mapping and Implementation.

Clinical Engagement has always been central to the development of SNOMED CT. However, in 2016, SNOMED International formally recognised the importance of clinical input, through the creation of a dedicated clinical engagement team and the agreement of clinical engagement strategy. The aim of strategy is to provide a scalable approach to engaging with clinicians, and to ensure SNOMED CT has the input required to ensure it remains up to date and relevant to clinical practice. To provide a scaleable approach for gaining clinical input from all clinical specialties, SNOMED International has decided to move away from the use of SIG's, and replace them with a virtual model. The virtual model will enable input to be gained from a large number of specialties in the future. 



  • What are Clinical Reference Groups (CRG)?

CRGs provide a framework to allow discussion between clinicians focused on specific clinical specialties, and also allow a conversation between clinicians and SNOMED International. The groups are focused on dedicated Confluence sites, which support discussions and provide information relevant to the specialty area. The aim is for clinicians to undertake discussion with colleagues on issues relating to SNOMED CT and its implementation.   The CRG's are completely open and transparent, and available to view by anyone. However, to participate in discussions, you must have a Confluence account and be logged in. The groups are open to all, and we would support input not limited to just the clinicians from the clinical specialty are.

Linked to the CRG's will also be project groups (focused on specific issues) and editorial groups (providing clinical validation to derivative products)

Ways of Working

Detail of the ways of working for the Virtual Clinical Groups are specified on the above link.


  • The model for clinical engagement

  • What is the expectation for collaboration? 

Whilst CRG's provide the framework, the expectation for the groups is they will provide the following:

      • A framework for multi-disciplinary topic discussion and working across professions
      • Access to expertise from all clinical domains
      • A mechanism for different levels of engagement
      • Provide access to discussions on clinical developments by other groups (e.g.implementers), to ensure that products are developed that can be implemented within systems. 


  • Why Participate? 

  • As a clinical terminology, it is essential that SNOMED CT contains clinical content that is relevant and up to date. To assist SNOMED International, we rely on input from clinicians and clinical groups internationally. From a participant perspective, engaging through the CRG's provides a mechanism to ensure that the content required by clinicians is included in SNOMED CT quickly and accurately. The CRG's also provide a mechanism to develop solutions to support clinicians in their day to day practice

  • Who can participate?

  • Participation in CRG's are targeted towards clinicians with an interest in the specialty area. However, the groups are open to all, and we would encourage implementers specifically to engage through these forum

  • How to create a group

    • If you are interested in creating a group, email The Clinical Engagement team will liaise with clinicians/clinical groups wishing to create a group to confirm criteria/requirements for CRG
    • Once the criteria/requirements for CRG are confirmed, they will be reviewed and agreed by the Clinical Coordination Group
    • If agreed, a CRG Confluence site will be created
    • Notification of the new CRG will then be published to clinicians, clinical groups and other potential stakeholders

  • Instructions on how to get involved

  • To participate in the CRG's you will require to be logged in to Confluence. This will allow you to take an active part in the discussions. If you are not logged into Confluence, you will have a Read only view of the pages. 

  • If you do not have a Confluence account, you can obtain one by contacting applying for an account here - Confluence User Accounts.




  • For more information, please have a look at the documents available and also the FAQ's

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