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10 year anniversary - Dutch Ringholm HL7 v2 training courses.

Publication date: Feb 19, 2013

This year Ringholm has provided HL7 v2 training courses 12 years in a row, and 10 years in the Netherlands - what has changed over the years ?

Use of HL7 v2

Ten years ago during our training courses we were effectively still 'marketing' the general concept of systems interoperability and HL7 version 2 as an interoperability standard. Currently we see wide acceptance of HL7 v2, with near 100% usage in hospitals in most of Europe, and the focus is shifting towards the use of HL7 v2 within a larger framework.

One of such frameworks is IHE, which focuses on the standardisation of workflows an their support using base standards such as HL7 v2. The various national/regional initiatives (e.g. the NHS in England, Nictiz in the Netherlands, Interop Sante in France, ..) also define how HL7 v2, and other interoperability standards, should be used in a wider context.

This is also reflected in the goals of the attendees of our HL7 v2 training courses: the attendees used to be solely focused on HL7 v2 (e.g. interface module programmers on behalf of a software vendor, or communication server managers in hospitals). We still see attendees with such a focused area of interest - however over the years the percentage of attendees that need to understand the 'bigger picture' and the relationships between HL7 v2 and other standards (e.g. HL7 v3, CDA, IHE, DICOM) has grown.

In a way Ringholm has gradually adapted to this trend by offering the overview of healthcare interoperability standards training course (which shows the most important characteristics of some of the key standards, and how those standards are interrelated) as well as training courses directly related to these frameworks, i.e IHE and the English ITK. HL7 v2 is, and will be, a key base standard in the development for such frameworks.

Quality of the training courses

The figure below shows the average overall note given to the HL7 version 2 training courses in the Netherlands over the course of the last 10 years. Note that in the Netherlands the "8.0" note (out of max. 10) represents the psychological hurdle between "good" and "perfect" - whereas the equivalent in the UK would be a "9.0" and in Germany a "1.5" (on a different scale). Countries have different subjective interpretations of a (seemingly standard) 1-10 scale.

Average overall note for Dutch HL7 v2 training courses\

As you can see the average note has risen from a 7.2 to a 8.4 - and we're working on getting an even better note.

Trainers, Tutors, Coaches, Educators or Instructors?

Over the years we've changed some of the wording on our website. We used to call ourselves (as persons) 'trainers'. In 'Northern European English' this will be understood te mean (as the British call it) a tutor. We used to offer 'Training' (as a product), now we offer 'Training courses' to disambiguate it from 'fitness training'. Language is a tricky thing..

Trainer (i.e. Tutor) parking spot near a conference center

Jokes about European English aside there are some rather English sounding words in European English that are understood in multiple European countries - but not in Britain or the US, e.g. "Handy" (hand held) for cell phone, or "Beamer" for LCD projector. Try arranging for a room for a training course in the US, and making sure it has a "Beamer" in it. I'm not sure the room wll be big enough...


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About Ringholm bv

Ringholm bv is a group of European experts in the field of messaging standards and systems integration in healthcare IT. We provide the industry's most advanced training courses and consulting on healthcare information exchange standards.
Rene's Column (English) Rene is the Tutor-in-chief of Ringholm.