INTEROPen Publishes CareConnect Guidance

CareConnect Guidance for Developers and Provider Organisations

The INTEROPen
CareConnect FHIR profiles and Transfer of Care specifications are now ready for First of Type implementation, with the CareConnect API following soon!

The term “CareConnect” – coined by HL7 UK – has become a recognised “brand” describing UK interoperability assets. These may be vendor-led, NHS Digital-led, or curated by members of the INTEROPen community. The INTEROPen FHIR curation process exemplifies the application of our values of openness, transparency and collaboration.

Our community work depends on members offering their time and expertise, and we recognise this model has its limits. If our pockets were deeper we would engage more, communicate wider, and improve our documentation, but we have no income stream and we charge our members no fees. It’s a balancing act because fees reduce engagement, and engagement is critical to developing useful, usable and used standards.

Despite these challenges, we have achieved a considerable amount as a community to drive the interoperability agenda forward and the undersigned members of INTEROPen have issued the following guidance regarding our INTEROPen CareConnect specifications:

“We believe that the processes, expertise and extent of engagement in the development of the curated CareConnect FHIR profiles (Appendix A), upon which the CareConnect API, Transfer of Care specifications and the GPConnect access structured record API (among others) are based, is of sufficient quality for vendors and providers, such as Global Digital Exemplars (GDEs) and Local Health and Care Record Exemplars (LHCREs) to begin First of Type development. In addition, NHS Digital have also confirmed that the Transfer of Care specifications is of sufficient quality for vendors and providers to begin First of Type development.

Taken together, elements of these specifications have undergone a significant amount of clinical and technical assurance to date, as well as review from our vendor community members. Through this level of scrutiny, we have identified and resolved many clinical modelling and technical issues. We believe the outstanding known issues are not significant enough to hold up First of Type development. In addition, our curated CareConnect FHIR profiles can also be used as a starting point for developing standards for other clinical use cases. As HL7 FHIR follows an iterative development model, the approach is “fail fast, fail often”: the specifications must be tested in real-world implementations to discover errors, inconsistencies and points of clarification that are currently unknown. Such testing aligns with sprint 3 of the INTEROPen End-to-End standards into practice model (Appendix B).

As a community, we must shoulder the responsibility for developing the CareConnect standards together to support new models of care.”

Adrian Byrne, Dougal Fleming, David Hancock, Dunmail Hodkinson, Munish Jokhani, Richard Kavanagh, Andy Kinnear, Ben McAlister, Joe McDonald, Ian McNicoll, Amir Mehrkar, Anne O’Hanlon, Luke Readman, Neil Robinson, Malcolm Senior, Indi Singh

Read full Guidance here

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