Association of Public Health Observatories Now at Version 2.0 (and the PHL sub-set of SNOMED CT)
Formerly known as the National Public Health Language
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Public Health Language
The content on this site is an historical archive only and refers to an earlier version of the Public Health Language (PHL). Please contact for up to date information about the PHL.
Version 2.0 (2008)
The Public Health Language is used to describe information and resources that are held on websites and databases with the aim of improving the searching for and retrieval of these resources.
The Health Development Agency and England's Public Health Observatories (PHO's) developed a unified Public Health Language (PHL) [formally known as the National Public Health Language] to facilitate interoperability. The first version of this language was officially launched at a conference on the 20th December 2004. The PHLis the result of integrating the former HDA's "Public Health Information Thesaurus" with the PHOs "Public Health Information Tagging System" (PHITS), which are no longer active as they have been superseded by the PHL.
The Public Health Information Thesaurus was originally based on the European Multilingual Thesaurus on Health Promotion. This thesaurus was used to index HealthPromis (the Health Promotion bibliographic catalogue), as well as the HDA's evidence base and the Public Health Electronic Library.
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Department of Health
Health Protection Agency
Connecting for Health

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National Public Health Language, Public Health Language, NPHL and PHL are the responsibility of PHE Knowledge and Library Service