OASIS approves emergency data exchange standards

The Organization for the Advancement of Structured Information Standards (OASIS), the international open standards consortium, has approved two emergency data exchange languages as OASIS standards, members of the organization said today.

The Emergency Data Exchange Language Resource Messaging (EDXL-RM) 1.0 and the EDXL Hospital AVailability Exchange (HAVE) 1.0 specifications have received the highest level of ratification, according to members of the OASIS Emergency Management Technical Committee, which is responsible for developing the standards through an open process.

Members of the technical committee include representatives from AtHoc, the Department of Defense, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Sandia National Laboratories, Warning Systems Inc. and other organizations.

EDXL-RM describes a suite of standard messages for sharing data among information systems that coordinate requests for emergency equipment, supplies and people. HAVE specifies an XML document format that allows a hospital's status, services, and resources – including bed capacity, emergency department status and available service coverage – to be communicated.

“Both EDXL-HAVE and EDXL-RM represent significant achievements in messaging standards development,” said FEMA Disaster Management Program Manager Sarah Hyder.

“Implementation of these standards not only enhances emergency management, but also improves the speed and quality of response activities. Once in the hands of emergency responders and managers, data messaging standards such as HAVE and RM will tremendously improve the exchange of information in real time.” Hyder said.

“EDXL-RM and HAVE make it possible for critical information about life saving resources to be shared across local, state, tribal, national and nongovernmental organizations to support a coordinated response to an emergency,” said Elysa Jones of Warning Systems Inc., chairwoman of the OASIS Emergency Management Technical Committee.

Participation in the Emergency Management Technical Committee is open to all companies, nonprofit groups, government agencies, academic institutions and individuals. Archives of the work are publicly accessible, and OASIS offers a mechanism for public comment.

Additional information on the committee can be found at http://www.oasis-open.org/committees/emergency/

OASIS advances standards for documents, e-commerce, Extensible Markup Language, government and law, security, service oriented architecture, supply chains, Web services and other areas of need identified by its members.

About the Author

Rutrell Yasin is is a freelance technology writer for GCN.

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