Continuity of Care Record (ASTM CCR) is a patient health summary standard, a way to create flexible documents that contain the most relevant and timely core health information about a patient, and to send these electronically from one care giver to another.
The CCR standard is a standard specification developed jointly by ASTM, the Massachusetts Medical Society (MMS), the Health Information Management and Systems Society (HIMSS), the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), along with many healthcare IT vendors. The CCR is an outgrowth of the inpatient Patient Care Referral Form (PCRF) adapted to all clinical settings.
The CCR standard contains various sections -- such as patient demographics, insurance information, diagnosis and problem list, medications, allergies, care plan, etc. – that represent a “snapshot” of a patient’s health data that can be useful, even lifesaving, if available when patients have their next clinical encounter. The ASTM CCR standard is designed to permit easy creation by a physician using an electronic health record software program EHR or Electronic Medical Record (EMR) system at the end of an encounter.
Because it is expressed in the World Wide Web standard language known as XML, the CCR can be created, read and interpreted by various EHR or Electronic Medical Record (EMR) from various software companies. The ability to share information across different software is known as "interoperability". The CCR can also be printed out in user-friendly paper formats, such as PDF and as a Microsoft Word document.
An explanation of the utility theory which affects the healthcare industry standards adoption is very well defined in a white paper for CCR.