Continua Design Guidelines - Version 2015

Continua's Design Guidelines contains references to the standards and specifications that Continua selected for ensuring interoperability of devices. It also contains additional Design Guidelines for interoperability that further clarify these standards and specifications by reducing options in the underlying standard or specification or by adding a feature missing in the underlying standard or specification.

These guidelines were specifically written for device manufacturers that intend to go through the Continua Certification process with their devices, companies that integrate Continua devices in systems and subsystems, and test labs that certify compliance to Continua specifications.

Download our white paper Fundamentals of Data Exchange for a basic description of the data that is being exchanged between sensors, gateways, and end services and the value-add Continua provides beyond the referenced standards to make implementations truly interoperable.

Continua members may download the Design Guidelines for free:

Version Free Member Download Link
Available for Public Ordering?
2016 2016 Design Guidelines Available Q1 2016
2015  2015 Design Guidelines Yes, see order form below
2014  2014 Design Guidelines Yes, see order form below
2012  2012 Design Guidelines Yes, see order form below
2011  2011 Design Guidelines Yes, see order form below
2010  2010 Design Guidelines Yes, see order form below
Version One  Version One Design Guidelines Yes, see order form below


Public Order Form



Public Commenting Non-members are invited to comment on the most current version of the Continua Design Guidelines.  All comments, from members of Continua and from non-members alike, will be reviewed and addressed in the next round of development.

Continua Advances the Internet of Things with its 2015 Design Guidelines

The 2015 Continua Design Guidelines were approved on November 8, 2014, and were made available to the public in July 2015. Members may begin certification to these guidelines shortly. For both Bluetooth Smart Weighing Scale and IEEE 11073-10424 Sleep Apnea Breathing Therapy Equipment, Continua can take certification applications immediately. 

New! WAN Mobile-Ready Interface: What's Needed for Personal Connected Health

The 2015 Design Guidelines enable a new mobile and app-ready option for WAN (wide area network), that is an important enhancement to support mobile health solutions, including key applications for health, medical and wearable devices. For example, the new Design Guidelines support the secure collection and transmission of personal health data from mobile devices to electronic medical records.

The newest Design Guidelines simplify and extend the services that can be provided to the home using industry standards, focusing on three areas: (1) simple access to device data, (2) additional services that support a better user experience, and (3) an improved framework for remote management.  

Enhancements in the 2015 Design Guidelines include:

  • Capability Exchange Certified Device Class -- reduces the amount of information that must be pre-configured on a device in order to obtain plug-and-play interoperability.
  • Observation Upload Certified Device Class via new REST Interface-- supports a range of use cases from informal health, wellness, fitness and social engagement applications to simple clinical applications. The REST Interface is prevalent in consumer Internet applications, such as those routinely found on Smartphone and tablet platforms such as iOS and Android.  REST web services are increasingly being used in the healthcare domain, including several projects in HL7 (Health Level 7 International, 2013) and IHE (Integrating the Healthcare Enterprise, 2013).
  • New Specializations for Health, Medical and Fitness Certified Device Classes -- augments the existing 17 device specializations and profiles with Sleep Apnea Breathing Therapy and Bluetooth Smart Weighing Scale and Body Composition Analyzer.
  • Authenticate Persistent Session Certified Device Class
  • Questionnaires Certified Device Class
  • Time-stamps and Time Synchronization

Participate in Interoperability Testing Phase

Continua members are invited to participate in the internal interoperability testing.  If you have any questions or feedback on the 2015 Continua Design Guidelines, please submit via Continua’s commenting portal.


2015 Continua Design Guidelines & Approved Use Cases Now Available


The 2015 Continua Design Guidelines contain references to the standards and specifications that Continua selected for ensuring interoperability of devices. The 2015 Continua Design Guidelines are now available for download. Approved use cases are also available.


Continua Use Cases, 2006-2014

Continua use cases are approved by member ballot and incorporated into its Design Guidelines according to procedures set out in Continua’s Lifecycle Process. Once approved for development, a use case is generally divided into one or more “work items”, discrete increments of capability, for development as Guidelines. In complex cases, some work Items may be completed and published as Guidelines while others remain in development.

Once approved at ballot, a use case normally remains open to development for a period of 4 years, after which it becomes ‘closed’ unless there is a case put forward for an extension.

The following documents provide indexed, searchable access to all balloted use cases, within their corresponding timelines. For questions about a particular use case or Continua’s process for approving and developing use cases into guidelines, please contact

The Continua Design Guidelines are available free of charge here

Continua device certification does not mean or imply that the device is legally marketable in any country; certification only assures that devices communicate in a standard fashion per Personal Connected Health Alliance certification requirements and Guidelines. Refer to the device manufacturer or country Health Authority for specific details associated to device marketability or usage. PERSONAL CONNECTED HEALTH ALLIANCE DISCLAIMS ANY AND ALL WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, WITH REGARD TO ANY CERTIFIED PRODUCTS, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR PARTICULAR PURPOSES OR INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY INFRINGEMENT. ANY AND ALL WARRANTIES ARE THOSE PROVIDED BY THE MANUFACTURER, DISTRIBUTOR OR SELLER OF THE DEVICES AND PERSONAL CONNECTED HEALTH ALLIANCE MAKES NO REPRESENTATIONS OR WARRANTIES WITH REGARD TO THE EXISTENCE OR AVAILABILITY OF THE SAME.