FAQ Category: FHIR

How different are the UK FHIR profiles from the international standards?

The FHIR profiles created by INTEROPen members reflect UK standards. However, it is important to understand the curation process used is there to only extend the profiles where necessary to fit local requirements. The curation process takes the FHIR STU3 resource definitions from HL7 International and reviews them to understand where they need to be changed to reflect NHS requirements in England.

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Given the length of time and money it took to implement PMIP and the lack of CAD adoption, how are you going to get FHIR adopted?

The Global Digital Exemplars (GDEs), Fast Followers and Local Health and Care Record Exemplar (LHCRE) contracts stipulate the use of FHIR standards as does the NHS Standard Contract. This contractual and funded route covers approximately 60% of frontline NHS organisations.

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As the curation of the CareConnect profiles is done by the INTEROPen community, do you think there should be a review of locally flavoured CareConnect profiles (i.e. GP Connect) that have had business rules placed on them by the INTEROPen community, to ensure the core aim of the profile is still being achieved?

GPConnect profiles and key national profiles should all be reviewed by the INTEROPen community, as it is essential for vendors who are implementing them on a national scale to influence the design and ensure there is consistency. However, because the Level 2 CareConnect profiles and CareConnect APIs have a basic set of constraints and operations to support UK interoperability, we hope that they can be taken and used by many local areas, vendors and innovative projects to develop new models of care in a way that doesn’t hold back innovation. We expect these projects will share their learning and specifications, and as they develop and scale, we envisage certain rules and patterns and other profiles emerging that may need to be plugged into a curation process so that other regions can pick them up with a degree of confidence that their design has been technically and clinically validated. Some regions may specifically come to INTEROPen for curation first, as they wish to gain further guidance. We will need to support both approaches.

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