openEHR is about enabling ICT to effectively support healthcare, medical research and related areas. Today ICT is used ubiquitously elsewhere, but is far from effective in Healthcare. The main problem in health is the lack of shareable and computable information.
The principal challenge for health ICT is to represent the semantics of the sector, which are far more complex than in other industries. Doing this requires a knowledge-oriented computing framework that includes ontologies, terminology and a semantically enabled health computing platform in which complex meaning can be represented and shared. At the same time it must support the economically viable construction of maintainable and adaptable health computing systems and patient-centric electronic health records (EHRs).
The openEHR endeavour is about creating specifications, open source software and tools in the technical space for such a platform. In the clinical space, it is about creating high-quality, re-usable clinical models of content and process - known as archetypes - along with formal interfaces to terminology.