Journal of Medical Systems

, 41:195 | Cite as

Combining Ontologies and Open Standards to Derive a Middle Layer Information Model for Interoperability of Personal and Electronic Health Records

  • Panagiotis PlastirasEmail author
  • Dympna M. O’Sullivan
Systems-Level Quality Improvement
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Systems-Level Quality Improvement


The aim of our study was to enable better interoperability between Personal Health Record (PHR) and Electronic Health Record (EHR) systems and vice versa. A multi-layer architectural model that resides between a PHR and EHR system has been developed. The model consists of an ontology-driven information model and a set of transformation rules that work in conjunction to process data exported from a PHR or EHR system and prepare it accordingly for the receiving system. The model was evaluated by executing a set of case study scenarios containing data from both a PHR and an EHR system. This allowed various challenges to emerge and revealed gaps in current standards in use. The proposed information model offers a number of advantages. Altering only the information model can incorporate modifications to either a PHR or EHR system. The model uses classes and attributes to define how data is captured which allows greater flexibility in how data can be manipulated by receiving systems.


Medical records systems, computerized Personal health record: electronic health record Health information exchange Interoperability 


Funding Statement

The author(s) received no financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Health Informatics Research Group, Department of Computer ScienceCity University of LondonLondonUK

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