IMECCHI started from several bilateral and then multi-site collaborative work between health services researchers working with coded health information. Initially, W Ghali and H Quan developed collaboration with V Sundararajan and then, taking advantage of a sabbatical of W Ghali in Lausanne, with B. Burnand, P Halfon and JC Luthi, with the participation of additional colleagues in Canada.
This collaborative work was followed by several publications and the organisation of a first meeting (funded primarily by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research) in Calgary and Banff, Alberta, Canada in the Spring of 2005. Several more colleagues joined the group at this gathering including, notably, Dr. P Romano who has played a key role in the development of the AHRQ Patient Safety Indicators. The Banff meeting was also an occasion for the group to elaborate a list of strategic priorities for its activities which eventually led to a publication.
A new sabbatical period of Dr. Ghali in Lausanne in 2006 allowed members of the group to organise the second face-to-face meeting of the group in Montreux, Switzerland. This meeting allowed IMECCHI to liaise with Dr BT Ustun, Leader of the Classification and Terminology Unit at the WHO and his colleague, Dr. Robert Jakob. Contacts have also been made with the OECD group working on PSI. The Montreux meeting also allowed the group to enlarge to include additional key participants and led the group to revisit its objectives and identify further initiatives to pursue its productive collaboration and agenda.
For more details regarding the direction of IMECCHI, click here.