Thursday, June 11, 2009

Informatics Defined, Explained

I have had the opportunity lately to further define and explain the field of biomedical and health informatics. I make this entry to provide pointers to them.

First, I just published a paper in BMC Medical Informatics & Decision Making that defines the major terminology of the field. This paper had its genesis during the frenzy around the time that the ARRA economic stimulus bill was being crafted. It became apparent to me that many on Capitol Hill did not know the terminology of the informatics field well, so I drafted a document that defined the major terms. I received some great feedback on the document, and subsequently submitted it to BMC Medical Informatics & Decision Making. It has now been peer-reviewed and accepted for publication. It can be found at:

I tagged the paper as a "Debate" paper, recognizing that not everyone will agree with my terminology. This will hopefully generate some debate such that some amount of consensus can be reached.

By the way, the publishing process of BMC is fascinating. You can read the comments of the peer reviewers (four highly prominent colleagues!) and my replies to them.

I have also updated and slightly renamed my What is Biomedical and Health Informatics? Web page, which gives an overview of the field via links and a voice-over-Powerpoint lecture. It can be accessed at:

Finally, I have carried out an overhaul of my web page, which needed a good cleaning! It is still at:

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