Continuity of Care Record (CCR)


The Continuity of Care Record (CCR) is a standard specification developed jointly by five organizations:
  1. ASTM International - one of the largest voluntary standards development organizations in the world-a trusted source for technical standards for materials, products, systems, and services.
  2. Massachusetts Medical Society (MMS) - the oldest continuously operating medical society in the United States.
  3. Health Information Management and Systems Society (HIMSS) - the healthcare industry's membership organization exclusively focused on providing leadership for the optimal use of healthcare information technology (IT) and management systems for the betterment of healthcare.
  4. American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) - one of the largest medical organizations in the United States with a mission to improve the health of patients, families, and communities by serving the needs of its members with professionalism and creativity.
  5. American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) – a non-profit organization reflected the physician's commitment to children and the specialty of pediatrics.

The CCR was created to foster and improve contiuity of patient care, reduce medical errors, and assure a standard of health information transportability when a patient is referred or transferred to another provider. The CCR is being developed and enhanced in response to the need to organize and make transportable a set of basic patient information consisting of the most relevant and timely facts about a patient's condition.


  • Referral : The referring provider/clinic ian should transmit the CCR information to the receiving provider in an electronic format, most likely utilizing secure email or HL7, and including the reason for referral along with the proposed minimum information.
  • Transfer (from an inpatient or institutional setting): The discharging provider/clinician should transmit the CCR to the provider and new care setting where the patient is being sent (to arrive before or with the patient).
  • Discharge (without obligatory referral or transfer): The CCR should be provided to the patient in paper or digital format for future use (including visits to the Urgent Care or Emergency Department) and to whomever the patient designates as the primary care physician or clinician who will be responsible for followup care, if needed.
  • The CCR can also serve as a Personal Health Record , containing patient-entered information. A person may keep a copy of the most recent CCR and supplement it, for example, with alternative medicine information and other personal health information.
  • The next healthcare provider will not have to search for or guess about a patient's allergies, medications, or current and recent past diagnoses and other pertinent information.
  • The next healthcare provider will be informed about the patient's most recent healthcare assessment and services.
  • The next healthcare provider will be informed about recommendations of the caregiver who last treated the patient.
  • As patient demographics will be provided, time and effort will be saved by not having to repeatedly ask a patient for demographic information in detail. Rather, this information can be more quickly and easily verified.
  • A patient's insurance status will be more easily established. Over time, this can be expanded within the system.
  • Costs associated with the patient's care will be reduced, for example through avoiding repetitive tests and basic information gathering.
  • The effort required to update the patient's most essential and relevant information will be minimized

Web Sources:

CCR Standard -
Continuity of Care Record (CCR) -
Health – RedOrbit – CCR –
ASTM International -

Related Terminology:



Wikipedia: Continuity of Care Record -
ASTM International: CCR –
Medical Records Institute – CCR -


external image image002.jpg

external image ch7_photo2.jpg