Clinical applications projects
USA   Argentina: En Español   MEDAL
The Medical Algorithms Project
Development of a centralized and free repository of Medical Algorithms.
keywords Main objective
medical algorithms, evidence-based care, clinical decision rules, predicition rules, medical errors, quality of care, continuing medical education. Collection, categorization, automation and dissemination of medical algorithms


MEDAL defines a medical algorithm as "any computation, formula, survey, or look-up table that is useful in healthcare". The main goals of MEDAL are essentially to overcome some of the barriers contributing to underutilisation of medical algorithms in healthcare by:
  • "ensuring accurate and reliable equations and algorithms
  • "providing adequate documentation with references to the original sources
  • "standardizing data elements, to enable automation of input and output
  • "indexing and linking for quick access and retrieval."

    "Since the start of MEDAL, "over 5,100 algorithms, spanning major medical domains, have been collected and processed and organized into 45 chapters" (table of contents).

    Downloading medical algorithms

    Each of the 45 MEDAL chapters consists of an MS Excel 97 Workbook and an Acrobat pdf document. For downloading, these have been compressed into self-extracting zip files. NB: All material on the MEDAL site is intended only for the educational and personal use of health care students and professionals.

    MEDAL chapter headings

    1. Performance Measures & Quality of Life
    2. Body Dimensions & Blood Volumes
    3. Hematology
    4. Coagulation
    5. Transfusion Medicine
    6. Cardiovascular System
    7. Electrocardiography & Cardiac Imaging
    8. Pulmonary & Acid Base
    9. Dentistry & Oral Medicine
    10. Gastroenterology
    11. Hepatobiliary & Pancreas
    12. Nutrition
    13. Endocrine & Metabolism
    14. Renal & Urinary System
    15. Obstetrics and Gynecology
    16. Male Genital System
    17. Neurology
    18. Psychiatry
    19. Ophthalmology
    20. Musculoskeletal Disorders
    21. Dermatology
    22. Immunology & Rheumatology
    23. Microbiology & Infectious Diseases
    24. Parasitology & Medical Entomology
    25. Antibiotics, Vaccines & Prophylaxis
    26. Infection Control
    27. Oncology -- Nonhematologic
    28. Oncology, Hematologic
    29. Trauma Medicine
    30. Critical Care
    31. Anesthesiology
    32. Clinical Pharmacology & Toxicology
    33. Environmental Toxicology
    34. Environmental Health
    35. Medical & Environmental Radiation
    36. Physical & Sports Medicine
    37. Occupational Medicine & Disability Assessment
    38. Forensic Medicine
    39. Decisional Analysis
    40. SI & Conventional Units
    41. Laboratory Calculations
    42. Healthcare Administration
    43. Medical Genetics
    44. Pediatrics
    45. Pharmacy Practice



    KA Johnson, JR Svirbely, MG Sriram et al. Automated Medical Algorithms: Issues for Medical Errors. Proc. AMIA 1999.


    " Medical errors can be reduced by the sharing of medical information and the correct application of medical information. A wealth of medical information exists in the form of published medical algorithms. These algorithms represent a summary of medical research ranging from simple calculations such as Body-Mass Index to complex outcome predictions. Application of such algorithms can generate information crucial to the clinical process. The barriers to their application include (among others): the lack of knowledge that they exist, uncertainty about their boundaries, difficulty in converting to the units expressed in the algorithm, and lack of availability at the point of care. Automation of medical algorithms can serve to both share the medical information as well as assist in the correct application of that information. "

    G Kantor, JR Svirbely, KA Johnson et al. MEDAL: The Medical Algorithm Project. Proc. MedInfo 2001.


    " There are numerous algorithms in health care, but most practitioners use only a small subset routinely. Algorithms would be more widely utilized if they were readily available in a usable format to clinicians, educators and researchers. A centralized, free repository of automated medical algorithms would be beneficial to the practice of medicine. "

  • start date end date location support
    1995 Ongoing USA

    En español Medal in Spanish

    Aims to be a global resource.
    The Institute for Algorithmic Medicine, a Texas non-profit corporation, owns the MEDAL site and its contents.
    contact Websites
    Dr John R. Svirbely, M.D.
    M.G. Sriram, Ph.D.
    Institute for Algorithmic Medicine
    USA (on medical matters) (on non-medical matters).
     bullet  En español  Medal in Spanish  bullet  Register with MEDAL
    Entry in directory: September 10 2003
    Last main update: September 10 2003

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