SNOMED CT

The National Information Board (NIB) document 'Personalised Health and Care 2020: A Framework for Action' recommended the move to a single terminology, SNOMED CT, for the direct management of care of an individual across all care settings in England.

SNOMED CT is an NHS approved fundamental standard (SCCI0034). Information on the terminology, including implementation guidelines and requirements are available on the NHS Digital website.

SNOMED CT was implemented across Primary Care settings from April 2018.  The team are now working with Secondary Care services to assist with the adoption of the clinical terminology.

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If you are requesting terms for use in Scotland, please email request to phs.terminologyhelp@phs.scot.

For the rest of the UK, see the UK SNOMED CT Request Submission Portal for how to request changes to SNOMED CT in the UK, UK Drug Extension and Dictionary of Medicines and Devices (dm+d).  Before submitting your request you might find it helpful to read the SNOMED CT UK Edition: Governance and Change Request Process as this provides guidance on the type of information required.

We recommend bulk or complex requests are submitted as early as possible to allow sufficient time for consideration.  Any requests exceeding 50 should be discussed with us prior to submission by contacting our helpdesk.

Editorial Principles

The Editorial Principles for the UK Edition of SNOMED CT describes policies applied to both UK-specific content, and content added for eventual inclusion in the International Edition. This may be of use to those submitting requests for content change, in helping to inform how concepts and descriptions are structured.

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NHS Digital provides the release files, subsets, mappings and related documents for those using SNOMED UK Edition within their systems. These are available in different packs to help you identify the sets of files required:

SNOMED CT UK Edition

The SNOMED CT UK Edition consists of the International Edition plus the UK-specific content provided within the UKClinical Extension and UK Drug Extension and which is for use in the UK only. The international Edition on its own is insufficient for use in the UK. 

 For release dates view the SNOMED CT Release Schedule 

To download the files, select 'UK Edition of SNOMED CT' from the list on the left hand side of the relevant area on TRUD

A new release of the SNOMED CT UK Edition is provided a short time after each release of the International Edition to allow UK-specific content to be included. A new release of the SNOMED CT UK Edition is provided in April and October of each year. 

SNOMED CT UK Clinical Extension

This contains additional content over and above that necessary internationally, for instance UK-specific administrative concepts.

Access the Release Documentation

SNOMED CT UK Drug Extension

This is a UK-only product which is updated and published every four weeks. This includes:

  • NHS dictionary of medicines and devices (dm+d) derived content
  • historical Clinical Terms Version 3 (CTV3) derived content
  • additional UK-specific content e.g. Trade Family Names and Trade Family Groups

All dm+d concept classes are included in the SNOMED CT UK Drug Extension (VTM, VMP, AMP etc.) but not all attributes and associations from the XML dm+d format are included.

The data also includes the Trade Family and Trade Family Group subsets which are provided to help system suppliers with the implementation of dm+d. Further information can be found on the dm+d website.

Access the Release Documentation

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SNOMED CT UK Clinical Edition, RF2 Cross-maps: Provides mappings from SNOMED CT to ICD-10 and OPCS-4 Classifications. More information can be found on the SNOMED CT to Classifications Maps page.

NHS Data Migration:  Provides mappings to support the migration of primary care systems from the Read Codes to SNOMED CT.

SNOMED Antecedent Versions Data Migration: Mapping from older versions of SNOMED to SNOMED CT - some areas of pathology laboratories are currently dependent on using legacy SNOMED products to SNOMED CT.