Language in Health Care Forum - featuring Professor Suominen

Adjunct Professor Hanna Suominen from the College of Engineering and Computer Science, Data61/ CSIRO, will be one of the speakers at the upcoming Language in Health Care Forum.

Professor Suominen will present 'Research Data and Analytics Methods for Clinical Language Processing.'


Over 10% of preventable adverse events in healthcare are caused by failures in information flow. These failures are tangible in handover; regardless of good verbal communication, 65%-100% information is lost after 3-5 shifts if notes are taken by hand, or not at all. We studied automated speech recognition (ASR) and text classification as a way to fill out a handover form for clinical sign-off. We introduced a Web app to demonstrate the software design by considering a form with 50 headings. We released a nursing handover data set, as recorded using a mobile device, built from 301 simulated patient records and handover scripts, spoken by an Australian registered nurse. We evaluated the software against submissions by shared task participants in 2015 and 2016 using cross-validation techniques and statistical significance tests to measure differences in processing quality. ASR recognised up to 73 % of 14,095 test words correctly. The classifier achieved on 100 test documents the 81% F1 in filtering out irrelevant text and up to 100% in filling out the form headings (38% on macro-average). The significance hinges on opening our data, software, and evaluations to the research and development community for studying clinical documentation, ASR, and classification.​

About the Language in Health Care forum:

The forum offers an opportunity for researchers from diverse disciplinary backgrounds to discuss how collaborative, multidisciplinary language-focused research can help address problems in contemporary health care. Internationally, language-focused research is increasingly contributing to the health field, for example by developing strategies to make communication in hospitals safer and more patient-centred and by highlighting issues in how clinicians explain diagnoses to consumers and the need to use language appropriately with consumers affected by particular conditions, such as dementia and autism.

The forum will explore the potential to develop collaborations to identify and address problems in the Australian health care context. Presentations of current research in the field will be followed by a panel discussion (with audience participation welcome) aimed at developing a specific and potentially ongoing interdisciplinary research agenda based on delegates’ expertise and interests. The forum is supported by the Centre of Excellence for the Dynamics of Language.

Registration, and a full program of the forum can be found on the dynamics of language website.

Date & time

9.30am–5pm 22 Sep 2017


Sir Roland Wilson Building, Conference Room 1.02, Australian National University

Internal speakers

Associate Professor Hanna Suominen

Updated:  10 August 2021/Responsible Officer:  Dean, CECS/Page Contact:  CECS Marketing