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Health Informatics Glossary

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AAFP   -   The American Academy of Family Physicians is a medical specialty society that represents 90,000 physicians and medical students. The Mission of the AAFP is to improve the health of patients, families and communities by serving the needs of members with professionalism and creativity.   See CCR, PCMH

AANP   -   American Association of Nurse Practitioners.   See AAPA

AAP   -   American Academy of Pediatrics.   See CCR, PCMH

AAPA   -   American Academy of Physician Assistants.   See AANP

ABAC   -   Attribute Based Access Control.   See AC, PBAC, RBAC

AC   -   Access Control (AC) is accomplished by hardware, software or operating policies that control access to facilities, computer devices and computerized systems (from an individual program to a network).   See ABAC, ACL, Authentication, Authorization, Non-repudiation, PBAC, RBAC

ACA   -   ("AW-kuh")   The Affordable Care Act, sometimes called "Obamacare." It's full name is PPACA.   See ACO, PPACA

ACC   -   American College of Cardiology

Acceptance Testing   -   A formal quality assurance process that allows users to impose standard performance tests on a newly delivered software or computer system prior to production use of the system.   See Unit Test

Access Control   -   See AC

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Access Point   -   A radio transceiver for wireless LAN access. A wi-fi base station.   See LAN, Wi-Fi

Accreditation   -   Voluntary certification conferred by a professional organization, such as NCQA or TJC.   See NCQA, TJC

ACK   -   A response flag in TCP to acknowledge receipt of a packet. The term is also used generically in other data networking contexts to acknowledge receipt of a message or a handshake, including HL7.   See TCP

ACL   -   Access Control List.   See AC

ACO   -   Accountable Care Organization.   See ACA, PPACA

ACP   -   American College of Physicians.   See PCMH

Acute Care   -   Health care typically delivered to a patient in a hospital and generally involving at least one overnight stay.   See Ambulatory Care, Inpatient, Outpatient, Patient

ADA   -   American Dental Association

ADT   -   Admission-Discharge-Transfer, the transactional data set, typically in a hospital information system, that maintains and updates the patient census by noting the time and date of each transition in patient status or location. Also, the HL7 message stream for the data set.   See HL7

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Admission   -   The process of a patient being admitted to a hospital.   See ADT

Adware   -   Short for "advertising supported software," a category of software which automatically renders advertisements. Most adware is harmless. However adware is also used as a method of attack for the insertion of spyware, such as keyloggers and other info-stealers.   See Infostealer, Keylogging, Malware

Adverse Event   -   An adverse event is an injury caused by medical management, rather than by the underlying condition of the patient.

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality   -   See AHRQ

Agent   -   Computer software programmed to automate a task, such as searching for specific information in a data rich environment.

Aggregated Data   -   A set of data compiled for activities such as Public Health or clinical research. Aggregated data sets are typically intended to be unidentifiable at the level of an individual person, however the recent appearance of massively popular social networking sites on the internet has been shown to enable reidentification of individuals in data sets previously assumed to be de-identified.   See De-identified_Data, Re-identified_Data

AHA   -   American Hospital Association

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AHIC   -   The American Health Information Community was a 17 member federal advisory body assembled in 2005 to make recommendations to the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) on how to accelerate the development and adoption of health information technology. AHIC was transitioned to the private sector in 2008 by the outgoing Bush administration and renamed the National eHealth Collaborative.   See HHS, NeHC, ONC

AHIMA   -   American Health Information Management Association   See CHIME, EHRA, HIMSS

AHIP   -   America's Health Insurance Plans

AHLTA   -   The Armed forces Health Longitudinal Technology Application.   See CHCS

AHRQ   -   The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality is major division in the U. S. Department of Health and Human Services. The mission of AHRQ is to improve the quality, safety, efficiency, and effectiveness of health care for all Americans.   See Effectiveness, HHS, NQF

AIRA   -   American Immunization Registry Association, publisher of HL7 Implementation Guides for Immunization Messaging.   See HL7, CVX, MVX, QBP, VXU

AJAX   -   Acronym for a creative mash up of software technologies, classic Ajax includes asynchronous JavaScript and XML. Collectively the Ajax techniques, and its descendants, enable client side web development of richly featured asynchronous web applications.   See DHTML, JavaScript, JSON, REST, XML

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Algorithm   -   A method of problem solving in which instructions are followed in a (usually) specific sequence. Algorithms may involve numeric calculation.   See Care Pathway, Expert System, Guideline, Inference Engine, Protocol

AMA   -   American Medical Association   See CCR, CPT

Ambulatory Care   -   A health care consultation delivered on an outpatient basis.   See Acute Care, Inpatient, Patient, Outpatient

AMIA   -   American Medical Informatics Association, a national member society of IMIA.   See IMIA, Informatics, MedInfo, Nursing Informatics, PII

ANA   -   American Nurses Association

Analog   -   An analog signal is continuous in time and amplitude, as opposed to a digital signal, which is discrete. Legacy voice grade phone systems, sometimes called Plain Old Telephone Service (POTS), use analog circuits.   See Broadband, Dialup, Digital, POTS, Signal, VoIP

Analytics   -   See BI

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Ancestor   -   In a concept hierarchy, an ancestor is a concept that is located above a specific concept in the hierarchy. Example: in SNOMED CT, cardiovascular disease is an ancestor of myocardial infarction.   See Concept, Descendant, Generalization, Hierarchy, SNOMED, Superconcept

Anonymize   -   A filtering process intended to transform data into a format which does not allow determination of the specific identity to whom the data refers.   See De-identified Data

ANSI   -   [ ANN-sea ]   The American National Standards Institute is the U.S. member body to the ISO. ANSI does not write standards; rather the Institute accredits standards developers that will establish consensus among qualified groups.   See HITSP, ISO, NCPDP, SDO

Answering Machine   -   A simple analog or digital device to record messages on a telephone.   See Voice Mail

AOA   -   American Osteopathic Association.   See PCMH

APA   -   American Psychological Association

APHA   -   American Public Health Association

APHL   -   Association of Public Health Laboratories

API   -   Application program interface.   See DNT

Application   -   Computer program that carries out a specific task, such as a "word processing application" or an LIS or EHR.   See EHR, LIS

ARRA   -   [ ARR-uh ]   The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, a $787 billion stimulus measure signed into law by President Obama on February 17, 2009. The HITECH portion of the law provided subsidies for aggressive private sector investment in health IT.   See Cal eConnect, CalHIPSO, HITECH, IT, MU, REC, SDE

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ASCII   -   [ ASS-key]   American Standard Code for Information Interchange, a character encoding scheme originally based on the English alphabet. The first edition was published in 1963.   See Blue Button

ASP   -   Application Service Provider, a type of Client-Server installation where a business hosts computer-based services for customers to access across a network, such as EHR or PMS solutions accessed over the Internet. The traditional topology to provision ASP services assumes there is a single server hosting the application(s).   See Client-Server, Cloud Computing, EHR, PMS, SaaS

ASTHO   -   [ AS-tow ]   Association of State and Territorial Health Officials is a non-profit membership association representing the chiefs of state and territorial health agencies.   See Biosurveillance, CDC, CDPH, CSTE, ISDS, NACCHO, WHO

ASTM   -   The American Society for Testing and Materials began as a domestic engineering standards body and later evolved into an international standards organization (ISO).   See CCR, ISO, SDO

ATNA   -   The Audit Trail and Node Authentication service establishes the characteristics of a basic secure node in an IHE environment.   See IHE

Attribute   -   A functional or descriptive data element in a terminology.   See Concept, Data Element, Terminology

Attribute Value   -   See Key-value

Audit Log   -   Record created by hardware (servers, routers, firewalls, etc.) or software (data bases, network systems, individual applications, etc.) that track when data are created, modified, transmitted or destroyed, including the identity of the user initiating the action.

Authentication   -   The physical or process method or methods employed to prove that the person or entity seeking access to information has the proper authorization. Generally used to protect confidential information by limiting system access to authorized users. Passwords are an example of a commonly employed authentication process.   See Access Control, Authorization, Encryption, Non-repudiation

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Authority   -   The organization responsible for creation and maintenance of a terminology or a vocabulary. For example, IHTSDO is the authority responsible for SNOMECD CT.   See IHTSDO, SDO, Terminology, Vocabulary

Authorization   -   A system established to grant access to generally confidential information. Authorization establishes the level of access by an individual or entity to data based on the identity established by an authentication process.   See Access_Control, Authentication, Consent





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Last Update:   1 August 2014