The paper presents the outlines of an ontology of plans and guidelines, which is then used as the basis for a framework for implementing guideline-based systems for the management of workflow in health care organizations. The framework has a number of special features, above all in that it enables us to represent in formal terms assignments of work-items both to individuals and to teams and to tailor guideline to specific contexts of application in health care organizations. It is designed also to enable implementations to do justice to the fact that the processes carried out in health care organizations may deviate in different ways from the norms set forth in corresponding guideline definitions. This means that implementations built in conformity with the framework will be marked by a type of flexibility that might make them more likely to be accepted by healthcare professionals than are standard guideline-based management systems.
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