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MAKING THE MOST OF HEALTHCARE EDUCATION RESOURCES WITH HEALTHCARE LEARNING OBJECT METADATA MedBiquitous Releases American National Standard to Improve Access to Healthcare Education Resources

Baltimore, Maryland, USA, May 14, 2008.  For organizations that create a lot of learning content and activities, it can be difficult for learners and educators to find the right content when and where it is needed. A new MedBiquitous/American National Standard will help healthcare education organizations to make the most of their content and connect to the broader community of healthcare educators.

ANSI /MEDBIQ LO.10.1-2008, Healthcare Learning Object Metadata (Healthcare LOM) provides a standard way to describe healthcare learning activities and resources, making them easier to catalogue and find. With improved access to the learning resources, education developers can reuse learning content when appropriate, thereby avoiding duplicative efforts and saving money while increasing the organization’s educational offerings. Learners can search across repositories to find the content that best fits their needs. In addition, educators can use search-based feeds of resources to integrate content into innovative educational offerings, or offer the searches as the basis of point-of-care learning that answers clinical questions at the point of need.

Healthcare LOM extends the IEEE Standard for Learning Technology-Extensible Markup Language (XML) Schema Definition Language Binding for Learning Object Metadata 1484.12.3-2005. The extensions provide a vehicle for metadata specific to healthcare education, including support for medical terminologies, continuing education credits, patient and professional resources, and medical images. Healthcare LOM also enables content developers to indicate the health profession and specialty of the target audience as well as location, date, and modality of activities, among other things. Healthcare LOM was developed within the MedBiquitous Learning Object Working Group.

“Many organizations are developing collections of educational resources,” said Morgan Bantly, Learning Objects Working Group Chair and eLearning Consultant with the US Department of Veterans Affairs. “Healthcare LOM will help those groups maximize the use of their content as their collection grows. It will also help those seeking to share their content with others in the healthcare community.”

Organizations can use Healthcare LOM to integrate their resources with resources from other collections. The Association of American Medical Colleges uses Healthcare LOM to facilitate searches of its MedEdPORTAL repository of educational resources. When educators visit the POGOe geriatrics repository, their search automatically searches MedEdPORTAL simultaneously, providing a greater breadth of learning resources from which to choose.  Healthcare LOM is also being used with SCORM as a part of the Collaborative Healthcare Training Group, a multi-agency training development group established by the US Department of Veterans Affairs.

“Instead of reinventing the wheel, we need to make the most of our learning content,” said Peter Greene, M.D., Executive Director of MedBiquitous and Chief Medical Information Officer of Johns Hopkins Medicine. “Healthcare LOM will allow healthcare educators to take a more collaborative approach to development and leverage high-quality content from the broader community.”

Healthcare LOM can be downloaded from the MedBiquitous website, http://www.medbiq.org.

About The MedBiquitous Consortium
Founded by Johns Hopkins Medicine and leading professional medical societies, the MedBiquitous Consortium is creating a technology blueprint for healthcare education. Based on XML and Web services standards, this blueprint will seamlessly supports the healthcare learner in ways that will improve patient care and simplify the administrative work associated with education and competence assessment. MedBiquitous also provides a neutral forum for educators and industry alike to exchange ideas about innovative uses of Web technologies for healthcare education and communities of practice. It is the mission of MedBiquitous to advance healthcare education through technology standards that promote professional competence, collaboration, and better patient care. For more information on MedBiquitous, please visit http://www.medbiq.org.