2004 introduction to healthcare data standards is available as part of the book
Patient Safety: Achieving a New Standard for Care, which you can read online or
download as a PDF. The relevant chapter is number 4, which starts, at page 127,
standards are the principal informatics component necessary for information
flow through the national health information infrastructure. With common
standards, clinical and patient safety systems can share an integrated
information infrastructure whereby data are collected and reused for multiple
purposes to meet more efficiently the broad scope of data collection and
reporting requirements. Common data standards also support effective
assimilation of new knowledge into decision support tools, such as an alert of
a new drug contraindication, and refinements to the care process.”
would serve as a template for a description of the role of data standards in
any sector. Change the healthcare-specific terms to equivalents in your own
domain, and you have the base case for standards.
standards have moved on since 2004, but the role of standards remains the same.
But how many handbooks on the key topics in other industries feature standards
in such a prominent way? If you know of any, let me know.
Meanwhile, the web serves to keep people informed about data standards on a day-to-day basis. Take a look at CommonDataHub (CDH), “the global repository for commonly used data standards such as ISO codes and industry code sets. CDH consolidates data sets from multiple sources, provides additional attributes in some cases, and maps related code sets to provide a complete picture of a subject area”.