RFH (Resources for Health): HL7 version 3 taken to the next step
Publication date: Aug 18, 2011
As part of the Fresh Look initiative HL7 went into a bit of self reflection, partly because of the low uptake of HL7 version 3 messaging: what would a good (and: new) specification look like? RFH is certainly a prime candidate.
The answer may be something like Resources for Health (RFH), a specification authored by Grahame Grieve, an active HL7 contributor from Australia. He just wrote a blogpost on the topic of Resources For Health: A Fresh Look Proposal. In the lead up to this announcement he's posted a series of comments on HL7 version 3, for example HL7 needs a fresh look because V3 has failed and HL7 needs a fresh look because V3 has succeeded - which each generated a fair number of comments. To me, his earlier blogpost Context of Interoperability (and notably the concept of Drive By Interoperability) reads like the rationale for some of the key design decisions in RFH.
Grahame's primarily a software implementer and a standards developer, and not a diplomat (it shows in some of his blogposts ;-) ) - certainly his concerns resonate with the wider HL7 version 3 implementation community. As a co-chair of the HL7 RIMBAA Working group (the HL7 v3 software developers) I've requested Grahame to address RFH during a RIMBAA session at the upcoming working group meeting (WGM) in San Diego (Tuesday September 13, from around 20:00 onwards). I'm sure it will be discussed at other venues during the WGM as well.
The concept of Resource as introduced in RFH isn't new to the RIMBAA community, which has been discussing SMIRFs as a unit for persistence. Many of the issues/questions RIMBAA addressed related to SMIRF will also apply to Resources in RFH. As such I'm sure RIMBAA implementers will have some questions for Grahame...
I've had an opportunity to look at the RFH specification ahead of its release (it is available at http://www.healthintersections.com.au/rfh/introduction.htm) - below is a 16 minute overview summary focusing on its design features and architecture. If you're deeply interested in XML you may wish to skip the video and go directly for the specification - the video purposefully doesn't contain any XML examples.
To me, RFH contains a lot of elements that turn it into an implementable standard. My main concern is not a technical one, but one of governance. If we assume RFH is adopted by HL7 as a next step in the development of HL7 version 3 - will we really be able to define a process whereby we can get agreement on the boundaries of the individual resources? Sure, we can aggregate resources into other resources, but there is some lower boundary of granularity that all will have to agree upon. Especially on the clinical side of things that won't be easy to accomplish.
We won't know until we try. RFH takes HL7 version 3 to the next step: it's based on the v3 core components (RIM, data types, vocabulary model), it extends the micro ITS/greenCDA approach, it solves the text/coded element issue, and it has a set of simple operations - leaving the definition of the dynamic behavior up to the conformance statements of the comminicating applications.
RFH certainly has the potential to blow some "fresh air" into the future development of HL7 version 3.
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Index of columns:
- News from the FHIR DevDays in Amsterdam (Dec 15, 2016)
- Next XDS Release (Oct 27, 2016)
- Five years of FHIR (Aug 11, 2016)
- Interoperability projects in Ireland - FHIReland (Mar 14, 2016)
- 2016 FHIR Jedi Calendar (Jan 06, 2016)
- Top 10 HL7 videos watched in 2015 (Dec 24, 2015)
- Update from the trenches on CDA R2.1/R3 and HL7v2. (Oct 15, 2015)
- FHIR DevDays - UK GP System APIs (Sep 16, 2015)
- IHE XDS - testing and implementation tools (Aug 25, 2015)
- Most often implemented IHE Profiles (Jun 08, 2015)
- Why we sponsor the HL7 WGM (May 10, 2015)
- FHIR in Paris (Apr 21, 2015)
- Mapping HL7v2 messages to FHIR. (Apr 13, 2015)
- Analysis of CDA R2 testing tools - most requirements are neither tested nor respected. (Feb 13, 2015)
- HL7 and IHE in Sweden (Feb 08, 2015)
- 2015 FHIR Chiefs Calendar (Jan 07, 2015)
- The Merry FHIR Choir caroling the 12 Days of Christmas (Dec 09, 2014)
- Chicago FHIR Update (Oct 13, 2014)
- Internationalization of HL7 (Sep 25, 2014)
- New XDS Advanced training course on offer by IHE Services and IHE Academy (Jul 14, 2014)
- Recent and Future developments of the DICOM standard (Mar 06, 2014)
- Top 10 HL7 videos watched in 2013 (Jan 02, 2014)
- Report from the HL7 WGM in Cambridge (Oct 16, 2013)
- Documenting the history of HL7 (Sep 03, 2013)
- Histology Lab Device Automation using HL7 version 2 (Jul 23, 2013)
- HL7 FHIR Elevator Pitch (Jul 15, 2013)
- Interoperability Standards - the no-sales pitch (Jul 09, 2013)
- HL7 UK - new landscape, new opportunities (Jun 26, 2013)
- Validation and error correction at the IHE Connectathon (Apr 25, 2013)
- CDA Implementation Guides - (not) invented here (Apr 17, 2013)
- Usage of IHE Profiles (Feb 25, 2013)
- 10 year anniversary - Dutch Ringholm HL7 v2 training courses. (Feb 19, 2013)
- About IHE Academy and new IHE training courses (Jan 12, 2013)
- CDA implementation experiences in the UK (Dec 04, 2012)
- Musings on free HL7 IP (Oct 01, 2012)
- HL7 Connectathons (Sep 09, 2012)
- Renovate HL7 version 3 (Aug 03, 2012)
- Frequency of use of HL7 message types (Jul 24, 2012)
- Lighting the FHIR, HL7s new major interoperability standard (Jun 15, 2012)
- Reflections on the HL7 membership model - the affiliate life cycle (Dec 28, 2011)
- Thinking like an OWL reasoner (Sep 17, 2011)
- RFH (Resources for Health): HL7 version 3 taken to the next step (Aug 18, 2011)
- What's so great about the HL7 organization? (Aug 04, 2011)
- Kerndossier: een Nederlandse versie van CCD (Dutch, May 03, 2011)
- A HL7 RIMBAA update (Apr 21, 2011)
- Timezone Hotel (Mar 29, 2011)
- HL7 and openEHR are cooperating (finally) (Jan 21, 2011)
- Increasing demand for IHE training courses (Dec 18, 2010)
- Context issues with the IHE QED profile (Dec 15, 2010)
- The changing role of HL7 country organizations (Jul 16, 2010)
- Implementing HL7 version 3 - the book (May 06, 2010)
- Adding openness to a closed world (Feb 09, 2010)
- How to lower the hurdle for HL7 v3 implementers (Jan 21, 2010)
- HL7 v3 deployment statistics (Dec 17, 2009)
- There's Trouble in Paradigm (Sep 25, 2009)
- Internationalization of HL7 (Sep 24, 2009)
- HL7 UK signs deal with Ringholm to deliver HL7 v2/v3 training courses in London (Sep 17, 2009)
- The use of HL7 in South Africa (Aug 20, 2009)
- The Next Web Conference in Amsterdam (Apr 17, 2009)
- The HL7 UK AGM and RIMBAA (Apr 16, 2009)
- The HL7 Wiki reaches 2000 pages (Mar 02, 2009)
- The HL7 roadmap for CDA R3 and the CCD (Jan 17, 2009)
- HL7 Affiliates Meeting in Orlando (Jan 11, 2009)
- Swiss and Dutch HL7 News (Dec 31, 2008)
- Devices and Prizes (Nov 22, 2008)
- HL7 in Norway: a situation report (Sep 02, 2008)
- Russian whitepaper (Jul 09, 2008)
- The HL7 Interoperability Conference - IHIC 2008 (May 30, 2008)
- HL7 creates a RIM Based Application Architecture (RIMBAA) group (May 18, 2008)
- Notes from the HL7 WGM in Phoenix (May 08, 2008)
- Germany embraces CDA eReferral document specification (May 02, 2008)
- HL7 v3 RIM based applications: an unintended side effect (Jan 19, 2008)
- Collaborative Tools (Jun 21, 2007)
- HL7 ist Pflicht in der deutschen Telematikinfrastruktur (German, Mar 16, 2007)
- HL7 based Tree inventory system (Jan 30, 2007)
- The link between HL7 and Open Source Software (Jan 06, 2007)
- Workflow Bribery (Sep 15, 2006)
- Timezones in HL7 (Jan 23, 2004)
- Controlled vocabularies: "@*%!!!" ? (Sep 01, 2003)
- Trusting the other Party (Nov 01, 2002)
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Ringholm bv is a group of European experts in the field of messaging standards and systems integration in healthcare IT.
We provide the industry's most advanced training courses and consulting on healthcare information exchange standards.
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Rene is the Tutor-in-chief of Ringholm.