Document Type

Conference Paper


This item is available under a Creative Commons License for non-commercial use only


1.2 COMPUTER AND INFORMATION SCIENCE, Computer Sciences, Information Science, 3. MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES, 3.2 CLINICAL MEDICINE, 3.3 HEALTH SCIENCES, Health care sciences and services

Publication Details

HEALTHINF 2008 International Conference on Health informatics, Funchal, Madeira, Portugal, 2008


Guidelines are self-contained documents which healthcare professionals reference to obtain knowledge about a specific condition or process. They interface with these documents and apply known facts about specific patients to gain useful supportive information to aid in developing a diagnosis or manage a condition. To automate this process a series of Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) and workflow processes are constructed using the contents of these documents in order to manage the validation flow of a patient sample. These processes decompose the guidelines into workflow plans, which are then called using condition triggers controlled by a centralised management engine. The software BDI agent offers an alternative dynamic which more closely matches the modus operandi of narrative based medical guidelines. An agent’s beliefs capture information attributes, plans capture the deliberative and action attributes, and desire captures the motivational attributes of the guideline in a self-contained autonomous software module. Agents acting on behalf of guidelines which overlap and interweave in similar domains can collaborate and coordinate in a loosely coupled fashion without the need for an all encompassing centralised plan.