Health Natural Language Processing Center (hNLP)

December 13, 2016
Free for AMIA members; $50 for non-members
Guergana Savova, PhD

The Health Natural Language Processing (hNLP) Center targets a key challenge to current hNLP research and health-related human language technology development: the lack of health-related language data. Without shared data, the research community cannot build on each other’s scientific progress as they do in other disciplines where massive amounts of data are available. Even worse, the stakeholders and consumers of hNLP technology in health discovery and care have little access to robust hNLP technology, and are left with needing to implement all methods from scratch on their own data.

Learning Objectives

After participating in this activity, the learner should be better able to describe: 

• The goals of the hNLP Center
• The structure of the hNLP Center
• How to become a member of the hNLP Center

Speaker Information

Guergana Savova, PhD
Associate Professor
Harvard Medical School and Boston Children's Hospital

Dr. Guergana Savova is Associate Professor at Harvard Medical School and Computational Health Informatics Program (CHIP; at Boston Children’s Hospital. Her research interests are in natural language processing (NLP) and information extraction especially as applied to the text generated by physicians (the clinical narrative).  Dr. Savova has been creating gold standard annotated resources based on computable definitions and developing methods for computable solutions. The focus of Dr. Savova's research is higher level semantic and discourse processing of the clinical narrative which includes tasks such as named entity recognition, event recognition, relation detection and classification including coreference and temporal relations (;; The methods are mostly machine learning spanning supervised, lightly supervised and completely unsupervised.
The result of Dr. Savova's research with her collaborators has led to the creation of the clinical Text Analysis and Knowledge Extraction System (cTAKES;
Dr. Guergana Savova holds a PhD in Linguistics with a minor in Cognitive Science and a Master’s of Science in Computer Science from University of Minnesota. Before joining Boston Children’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School in 2010, Dr. Savova was faculty at the Biomedical Statistics and Informatics Department, Mayo Clinic (2002-2010).