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SNOMED International joins Bahmni Coalition to extend the global benefits of SNOMED CT’s structured clinical terminology

June 21, 2024

Building on the success of the 2023 SNOMED International and Bahmni Coalition collaboration, SNOMED International has formally joined the Bahmni Coalition. Bahmni, a digital public good, is an easy-to-use, open-source hospital system for healthcare providers in low-resource settings. Bahmni was created in 2012 as part of the social impact program at Thoughtworks, a global technology consultancy that integrates strategy, design and engineering to drive digital innovation.

The Bahmni Coalition is a group of organizations involved in the product across various capacities, including partners that use Bahmni’s open-source electronic medical record (EMR) and hospital information system (HIS) and partners who contribute to Bahmni’s ongoing development and implementation, and offer related services.

The Coalition members, who set the direction for Bahmni and promote its adoption, include Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors without Borders), an international organization that provides medical assistance to people affected by conflict, epidemics, disasters, or exclusion from healthcare; OpenMRS, developers of the open source Electronic Medical Records platform used in more than 80 countries; and Thoughtworks, among a number of other partner organizations focused on harnessing open-source technology to support the development and deployment of digital health technologies in limited-resource regions. Review the full list of Coalition members here.

With over 500 implementations in more than 50 countries, the easy-to-use EMR and hospital management system brings together essential functionalities such as patient registration, appointments, recording diagnosis and procedures, billing, lab, pharmacy, and more, into one cohesive platform. It is the preferred solution in many Asian and African countries and a strategic asset for many large humanitarian organizations.

SNOMED International worked with the Coalition throughout 2023 to integrate SNOMED CT, the world’s most comprehensive clinical terminology into the Bahmni EMR, enabling clinicians to record diagnoses and other clinical data. The SNOMED CT-enabled EMR can also be used for reporting and Clinical Decision Support (CDS) use-cases, for searching and saving diagnoses, receiving alerts when a drug-diagnosis interaction is contraindicated, generating diagnosis reports, and creating forms. With the integration of SNOMED CT, patient records can be standardized and therefore more easily exchanged with other electronic health records.

“Working with the Coalition on a more formal basis is a very exciting next step for SNOMED International,” says CEO Don Sweete. “Enabling the integration of SNOMED CT into the Bahmni EMR helps fill in the existing gaps in using healthcare data standards to structure electronic health record data, much of which is captured in clinician notes, and enables the data to be used for other purposes such as analytics as well. We are pleased to provide the Coalition with this capability, as well as to share our knowledge and experience in working with low- to middle-income countries on a broader basis.”

“Our partnership with SNOMED International marks a significant step forward in empowering healthcare workers in low-resource settings with the tools they need to deliver standardized, accurate care. The integration of SNOMED CT with Bahmni improves data management while also establishing the foundation for better patient outcomes and a more equitable healthcare landscape globally,” said Satish Viswanathan, head of social change for Thoughtworks in India and member of the governing committee of the Bahmni Coalition.

As part of the Coalition, SNOMED International will work with other members to advance the organization’s mission and goals, build support for the Bahmni EMR, participate in and drive marketing activities, and participate in the Coalition’s various committees.

Over 2024, the Coalition will continue to seek feedback on its 2024 roadmap for the Bahmni EMR and define and develop new features.

  • Listen to a podcast on the SNOMED International-Bahmni collaboration.

About Thoughtworks

Thoughtworks is a global technology consultancy that integrates strategy, design and engineering to drive digital innovation. We are over 10,500 people strong across 48 offices in 19 countries. For 30 years, we’ve delivered extraordinary impact together with our clients by helping them solve complex business problems with technology as the differentiator.

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