GDL2 Guideline Language v2 specification released

Releases | April 15, 2019, 12:26 p.m.

We are proud to announce the publication of the version 2 of the Guideline Definition Language (GDL2) design specifications.

Exactly six years has passed since the first version of GDL was published by the openEHR Foundation, GDL-based CDS applications have been deployed to improve healthcare in Swedish regions, e.g. the stroke prevention app, clinically validated by a large scale randomized clinical trial led by the cardiologists from the Linköping University Hospital ( There have been two successful Summer CDS App Challenges ( with participants from Sweden, Finland, UK and USA. More than 150 archetypes/GDL based apps ( have been built and published under open source license by informatics/medical students as part of our community outreach programme. For several years, GDL has been taught as part of the Clinical Decision Support lectures at the MSc Health Informatics programme at Karolinska Institutet, Sweden.

More recently GDL2 has been used to create detailed personalized care plans for elderly patients with multiple chronic conditions in a EU-funded project known as C3-cloud ( Last year, GDL2-based GP facing CDS apps were developed as part of the Scotland National CDS project, and received very positive feedback from the clinicians. The development of the GDL2 design specifications has been informed by real-life CDS implementation projects as well as other standardization efforts from openEHR, FHIR, and CDS-hooks.

The plan now is to find synergy and convergence between the openEHR Expression Language, Task Planning and a future GDL3. We are excited about the next phase of the journey of GDL, and looking forward to the feedback from the community.

Rong Chen MD PhD, 
Cambio CDS, Sweden;
openEHR Specifications Editorial Committee (SEC)

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