4 November 2013 – At the Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC®)
Technical Committee plenary meeting on 26 September, the Technical Committee
approved the charter for a new OGC Health Domain Working Group (DWG). The
charter is available at http://www.opengeospatial.org/projects/groups/healthdwg.
In 2010 the OGC partnered with technological, health, and
research organizations on a
three-year research project funded through the European Commission's 7th
Framework Program. The project was called EO2Heaven (Earth Observation and
Environmental Modeling for the Mitigation of Health Risks). The open
standards-based Spatial Information Infrastructure developed for EO2Heaven was
implemented in case studies in Dresden, Germany, the Durban industrial basin in
South Africa, and Uganda.
Open standards were vital to this
project, supporting cross-domain communication among partners in diverse fields
and locations and facilitating the integration and analysis of spatial,
temporal, and epidemiological data. The project also addressed privacy issues and
intellectual property implications. See http://www.eo2heaven.org/ for more information.
Seeing the success and potential of this
project and the growing need for interoperability in the healthcare and public
health fields, a group of OGC members formed the Health DWG. This working group
will articulate spatial interoperability requirements in a wide range of health
applications, such as: telemedicine, bio-medical research, in-hospital
navigation, wearable devices, epidemiological surveillance integrated with
related environmental and socioeconomic data; and modeling and responding to
cross-border health risks. The group will seek to identify possible health
industry "profiles" of standards, and also gaps in current standards.
Initiators of the OGC Health Domain
Working Group include ESRI; IOSB Fraunhofer; Eddie Oldfield, an Individual
Member of the OGC; The SI Organization and the UK Met Office. The University
Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR), University of Nottingham, and
others (both OGC members and non-members) have endorsed this effort.
Eddie Oldfield is the interim chair of
the new DWG. Co-chair nominations are
Members of the public can follow the
activities of the OGC Health DWG, make comments, and subscribe to the Health
DWG listserv at the OGC Health DWG web page.
The OGC is an international consortium of more than 475
companies, government agencies, research organizations, and universities
participating in a consensus process to develop publicly available geospatial
standards. OGC standards support interoperable solutions that
"geo-enable" the Web, wireless and location-based services, and
mainstream IT. OGC standards empower technology developers to make geospatial
information and services accessible and useful with any application that needs
to be geospatially enabled. Visit the OGC website at http://www.opengeospatial.org/contact.