UAE health sector to adopt SNOMED CT in national health records

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) should adopt SNOMED CT in their national health records, it emerged. Confirmed by the country’s Ministry of Health and Prevention (MoHAP), acquiring the complete clinical content database is part of the government’s mission to “unify the data content collection process and to organize patient health records in the United Arab Emirates using a single terminology within the Riayati platform.

Riayati is the United Arab Emirates’ National Unified Medical Record System (NUMR), connecting more than 3,000 healthcare providers from the public and private sectors.

“Using SNOMED CT would improve functionality and coordination between health facilities. It will also help improve the exchange of organizational data, such as the eClaims Office of the Riayati platform; the Dubai Health Authority’s Nabidh platform; and [the] The Malaffi platform that connects public and private sector healthcare providers in Abu Dhabi, ”said Ali Al Ajmi, director of digital health at MoHAP. “The detailed data stored electronically in this system would help increase the access of hospitals, clinics and pharmacies in the UAE to electronic health records. [EHRs] and electronic medical records [EMRs].

“With comprehensive and statistical data on medical analyzes and population health in place, this system will also help hospitals speed up clinical decision-making in terms of patient care and processing of insurance claims, in addition to support the measurement and monitoring of the quality of care and the use of resources.


Collaboratively developed, SNOMED CT – or SNOMED Clinical Terms – is considered the “world’s most comprehensive and accurate multilingual health terminology” and can be mapped to other coding systems.

Primarily used for the electronic exchange of clinical health information, the system enables EHRs to be more efficient by consolidating medical terms having the same meaning.

The National Library of Medicine explains, “For example, the terms ‘heart attack’, ‘myocardial infarction’ and ‘MI’ may mean the same thing to a cardiologist, but, to a computer, they are all different. There is a need to exchange clinical information in a consistent manner.

“SNOMED CT responds to this need by enabling semantic interoperability and supporting the exchange of clinically validated health data between different healthcare providers, settings, researchers and others.

Updated twice a year, the benefits of using SNOMED CT in EHRs include improved communication and increased availability of relevant and critical clinical information to improve real-time decision making. It also enables more accurate reporting in research, data analysis, precision medicine, and management.

Moreover, since it allows multilingual use, it can solve all the problems caused by language barriers.

This latest announcement is in line with “MoHAP’s strategy to develop health information systems, apply global standards for infrastructure management in health facilities, and develop appropriate technology for the health management system. the population, ”the ministry said in a statement.


“The Riayati Platform is seen as one of the priority projects that contribute to strengthening and empowering the health sector in the United Arab Emirates. It is a digital platform containing updated data from patient records and providing innovative solutions in the automation and management of health information ”, said Abdulaziz Al-Zarouni, Deputy Under Secretary interim for the support services sector. “Adopting these technical solutions is a paradigm shift for the ministry in its quest to unify medical data and health data documentation forms.

“These cutting-edge technological solutions will also facilitate the flow of clinical terminology and the use of a common language, as electronic medical records [EMRs] and the exchange of health information [HIE] adopt a common language.

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