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Subject: HKSAR Government Collects Infectious Disease Information with XML and Hermes

HKSAR Government Collects Infectious Disease Information with XML and Hermes

Hong Kong SAR, Peoples Republic of China - April 14, 2005 - Center for
E-Commerce Infrastructure Development (CECID), University of Hong Kong (HKU)
is pleased to announce the completion of the Notifiable Infectious Disease
Information Messaging System (NIDIMS) project for Department of Health (DH),
which is the health advisor of the Government of the Hong Kong Special
Administrative Region and an executive arm in health legislation and policy.

Rapid transmission of infectious diseases like SARS and meningitis as well
as emerging diseases of Avian Flu pose a tremendous threat to our community.
Special attention must be paid to the surveillance mechanism within HKSAR
and between HKSAR and neighboring regions. As a result, DH invited CECID to
set up a centralized and standardized disease surveillance system based on
XML and ebXML technologies. The project involves designing a set of XML
Schemas according to the W3C XML Schema Recommendation and the XML Schema
Design and Management Guide (under the HKSARG Interoperability Framework).
These resulting Schemas are the underlying architecture for information
exchange on 28 regulatory infectious diseases. Another objective of the
project is to develop a software application, the Notifiable Infectious
Disease Information Messaging System (NIDIMS) that supports reliable and
secure disease surveillance information collection. The messaging framework
is based on ebXML Messaging Service version 2.0 (ebMS v2.0) specification
developed under OASIS. The flagship products of CECID, ebMail and Hermes
(free downloads at http://www.freebxml.org) are deployed in the software for
secure and reliable information exchange. This system not only brings
enormous economic benefit to the Government and Hong Kong in terms of
reducing communication lead time and data entry errors, but also improves
the efficiency and effectiveness in communication between DH and other
healthcare service providers. 

Deliverables of the NIDIMS Project are deployed in Hong Kong Centre for
Health Protection (http://www.chp.gov.hk/) (CHP)'s central notification
office (CNO) online reporting system to help CHP strengthen Hong Kong's
surveillance system and network for infectious diseases. The CHP's vision is
to become a centre of excellence in disease prevention and control with the
focus on epidemiology training, surveillance, risk communication, research,
coordination and preparedness, and contingency planning.

About CECID (http://www.cecid.hku.hk)
Established in January 2002, Center for E-Commerce Infrastructure
Development (CECID) at the University of Hong Kong conducts e-commerce
research and development with the vision of helping organizations increase
their competitiveness in the global economy. CECID develops e-commerce
enabling technologies, participates in important international e-commerce
initiatives, supports e-commerce standardization for Hong Kong and the Asia
Pacific Region, and transfers e-commerce technology and skills to the
community. With projects primarily funded by the Hong Kong Government's
Innovation and Technology Commission, CECID is an active member of OASIS and
the ebXML Asia Committee. The Center also collaborates with a number of lead
technology users in the Asia-Pacific Region on turning R&D results into
real-life business applications. CECID's contributions to the community
include its code donation of Hermes and ebMail to freebXML
(http://www.freebxml.org) and the production of an in-depth design and
management guide on XML Schemas for the Hong Kong Government. CECID is
currently developing a plug-and-play Internet appliance for secure and
reliable transmission of electronic documents based on ebXML / Web Services.

PR Contacts for Press and Analysts:
Dorris Tai (cwtai@cecid.hku.hk)
Business Manager
Center for E-Commerce Infrastructure Development (CECID) Dept. of Computer
Science The University of Hong Kong
Tel: +852 2859 2818
Fax: +852 2547 4611
URL: http://www.cecid.hku.hk

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