PRSB is working on a new pathology project to improve the way pathology tests are requested and results reported in the UK.

The current system for requesting pathology tests and reporting results varies widely from one laboratory to another. Different laboratories use different test lists and different units to measure and report results. For clinicians this can mean they need to interpret results for the same type of test differently depending on which laboratory has carried out the testing and reported the results. This can lead to misinterpretation and errors.

The aim of this work is to inform how new standards can be used to replace outdated pathology messaging systems in primary care and rolled out later across all areas of health and care.

The standards will be based on the clinical terminology, SNOMED CTto define test requests and results, and machine readable standards for units of measure. These will all be shared between systems digitally using FHIR (fast healthcare interoperability resources) messaging. 


The following workshops will take place throughout late November and the first week of December 2020. Please contact for workshop joining details.

Workshop for:



Technical/scientific staff (1)

12-2 pm

Thurs 19th Nov

Technical/scientific staff (2)

12.30-2.30 pm

Wed 25th Nov

Technical/scientific staff (3)

12-2 pm

Wed 2nd Dec

Clinical users of pathology tests and results (1)

12-2 pm

Wed 18th Nov

Clinical users of pathology tests and results (2)

12-2 pm

Thurs 3rd Dec

Patients who receive pathology test results

12-2 pm

Tues 24th Nov

Research staff

12-2 pm

Tues 1st Dec

For more information on the project, please contact

More details on the individual standards being developed by NHS digital are available at