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The value of SNOMED CT

As the most comprehensive clinical terminology in use around the world, the implementation and adoption of SNOMED CT can enable a multitude of benefits for health systems globally.

Learn more about the case for investment in SNOMED CT:

The case for investment:



In 2020, SNOMED International released its 2020-2025 Strategy and identified the need to revisit the value proposition for key stakeholder groups as well as illustrating the case for investment in SNOMED CT for Nations, health systems, vendors, etc., globally. The product of this analysis is shared here.


The benefits

SNOMED CT-based clinical information benefits individual patients and clinicians as well as populations while supporting evidence-based care.


Electronic health records


The use of an Electronic Health Record (EHR) improves communication and increases the availability of relevant and critical clinical information. When clinical information is stored in a way that allows meaning-based retrieval, the benefits are greatly increased.
These benefits range from increased opportunities for real-time decision support to more accurate retrospective reporting for research, data analytics, precision medicine, and management.


Benefits to individuals


SNOMED CT-enabled clinical health records benefit individuals by:

  • Enabling clinical information to be recorded consistently

  • Enabling support systems to check the record and provide real-time advice

  • Supporting the sharing of appropriate information with others involved in delivering care, allowing the understanding of the information in a common way by all providers

  • Allowing accurate and comprehensive analysis that identifies patients who require follow-up or changes in treatment

  • Removing language barriers – SNOMED CT enables multilingual use


Benefits to populations


SNOMED CT enabled clinical health records benefit populations by:

  • Facilitating early identification of emerging health issues, monitoring of population health, and agile response to changing clinical practices

  • Enabling accurate access to relevant information, reducing costly duplications and errors

  • Enabling the delivery of relevant data to support clinical research and contribute evidence for future improvements in treatment

  • Enhancing audits of care delivery with options for detailed analysis of clinical records to investigate outliers and exceptions

Evidence-based healthcare

Evidence-based healthcare


SNOMED CT enabled clinical health records benefit populations by:

  • Enabling links between clinical records and enhanced clinical guidelines and protocols.

  • Enhancing the quality of care experienced by individuals.

  • Reducing costs of inappropriate and duplicative testing and treatment, limiting the frequency and impact of adverse healthcare events.

  • Raising the cost-effectiveness and quality of care delivered to populations.

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The business case

The business case


Membership and national use of SNOMED CT offers a number of advantages:

  • Reductions in inappropriate or duplicate clinical testing

  • Reduction in adverse drug events

  • Improved management of key disease groups, such as cardiac care and oncology; and,

  • Cost savings in terminology development, licensing fees, and transcription costs of mapping to ICD or other coding systems.


Review the “business case for SNOMED CT summary” to learn more about these benefits and how to build your own business case for sustaining and expanding investments in SNOMED CT to drive health system improvements.


SNOMED CT Value Series

The SNOMED CT Value Series profiles real world, first person accounts of how SNOMED CT has been implemented in global health systems, and the value it has delivered.

The first chapter of the Value Series outlines the implementation journey of the Canterbury District Health Board in New Zealand, highlighting how SNOMED CT has supported its current and future success.

An integrated health system powered by structured data

Value series

A quality approach


Maintaining the quality of SNOMED CT is of core importance and is rigorously undertaken by the organization on an ongoing basis. We ensure a quality approach through:  

  • Expert personnel: Experienced authors, with clinical backgrounds, across varied domains  

  • Guidance and training: Editorial and mapping guidelines, customer guidance

  • Process: Automated rules validation, pattern evaluation

  • Collaboration: Alignment with standards, SME groups, stakeholders

SNOMED International engages in processes to undertake a broader examination across all hierarchies. Through our Quality Initiative, we adopt a greater focus on correcting structural anomalies as well as modification of content, resulting in a higher level of clinical accuracy.



Our education program is designed to enable users to maximize their knowledge of SNOMED CT


Learn more

Explore the wide range of resources available to our community of practice

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