AID Transition Plan (WG to HUG)

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Issue: How should we transition the AID group from being a WG within HL7, to a HUG (HL7 User Group) within HL7? This has an inpact on governance, the role payed by AID within the organization, its deliverables etc.

  • The GOM is silent on HUGs, and on transitioning WGs to a HUG
  • HL7 are currently piloting the concept of a HUG in the form of a newly created Immunization HUG.
  • The HL7 User Group task force coordinates the creation/management/piloting of HUGs, pending the definition of more formal goverance procedures.
Note: this is only exploratory at this point in time, AID hasn't made a decision yet as to whether it will
actually turn itself into a formal user group.

Pros/Cons of being a HUG rather than a WG

Pros:

  • AID (and RIMBAA) have always exhibited the characteristics of a user group - e.g. we don't create any standards, we don't focus on standards developers but on standards users. This is also expressed by the fact that we tend to score low on the 'WG health metrics', because the focus of these metrics is on standards development. As such being a HUG would potentially be a better fit than being a WG: HUGs focus on usage of the standard, and not on the development of standards.
  • HUGs are a new and untested concept within HL7. This gives us an opportunity to shape the procedures and the workings of all future HUGs, whilst ensuring that those will be suitable for AID HUG as well.

Cons:

  • HUGs are a new and untested concept within HL7. As such there is no guarantee that whatever goverance and procedures we come up with initially for AID will be the same in a few years - HL7 could even pull the plug on all its HUGs if the pilot (i.e. the Immunization HUG) is found to be unsiccessfull.
  • HL7 regards user groups as being a 'member benefit', which means all discussions and products may be unaccessable to those not a member of the HUG or HL7 itself. The Immunization HUG has its own (closed) Wiki.

Transition process

Essentially the transition is a two-step process:

  1. Petitioning the TSC to disband the AID WG (a process defined by the HL7 GOM)
  2. Petitioning xxx (unclear at this point in time) to create a AID HUG. The process/forms to do this will be comparable to the creation of a new WG. See forms on the User Group Task Force Draft Documents page.
    • Note that the forms were created for a HUG focusing on 'clinical users' of HL7 standards, so there'll need to be changes given that AID focuses on a different kind of HL7 users.

We'll need to agree upon the financial aspects:

  1. HUG Membership fees
    • For the Immunization HUG, who meet monthly via a webconference, and will have 1 annual face to face meeting, membershup of the HUG is USD 100, or it's free if one is a voting member of HL7 International.
    • AID has multiple face to face meetings a year, and doesn't charge any membership fee, the meetings are open for all to attend. We may have to charge USD 100 a year for those that are NOT members of either HL7 interbational nor any HL7 affiliate.
      • HL7 International has stated it won't be involved in the organization nor subsidizing any 'regional' or 'local' meetings of the HUG - 'regional' and 'local' being as of yet undefined terms however.
      • HL7 International has stated it is prepared to be involved in the organization of 'international' user group meetings - 'international' being an as of yet undefined term however.
  2. Face to face meeting fees
    • A registration fee may be called for to compensate the costs of the meeting facailities (mostly these are sponsored venues in the case of AID) and catering (20-45 Euro, $26-$60). A fee of EUR 50/$65 was considered to be acceptable when we discussed such meeting fees at some of AIDs meetings.
    • Any surplusses could potentially be used to fund the travel costs of invited speakers (who would otherwise be unable to attend).