On this page
What is SNOMED CT and why was it chosen?
SNOMED CT is considered the internationally pre-eminent clinical terminology and has been implemented in over 50 countries. It has been endorsed by both the Australian and Aotearoa New Zealand governments.
Benefits of using SNOMED terminology:
- Clear descriptions of concepts and unambiguous terms;
- Hierarchical nature allows for enhanced reporting capabilities;
- Standardised terminology, regardless of specialty, and
- Allows data to be benchmarked internationally.
RACS reference set
SNOMED CT-AU (the Australian version of SNOMED) contains more than 50,000 procedure terms, not all of which are relevant in the surgical setting.
RACS collaborated with the CSIRO Australian eHealth Research Centre to develop a surgical subset for use within MALT. This reference set currently contains more than 17,000 procedures and covers terms from all specialties.
RACS is working with the CSIRO and the Australian Digital Health Agency (ADHA) to expand on the reference set according to surgeon feedback.
If you can't find what you're looking for, try searching the Shrimp Browser for all available SNOMED CT-AU terms. The search results will present the SNOMED code, preferred term and synonyms for the procedure. You can then search for procedures in MALT using the preferred term and synonyms. If you still can't find the correct procedure in MALT, click on the 'Can't find my procedure?' option when creating a case to send a query to the MALT team.
How SNOMED CT-AU is used within MALT
The RACS reference set of SNOMED CT-AU terms will provide one list of procedures across all specialties. This means that surgeons will be able to enter any procedure, regardless of their specialty.
For those who need to report to a Board (Trainees, Specialist International Medical Graduates under assessment, and Fellows sub-specialising), 'Board reporting terms' are given a priority in searches and are bolded to be easily found. You will be able to record non-bolded terms; however, be aware that they will not appear on any reports that are sent to the Board. There are other reports available within MALT that do include these terms, if you want to produce them for personal use.
The SNOMED CT-AU procedure list also enables access to the peer-review audit features of MALT that have been built around this list.