The Next Generation Standard Has Transformed Health Information Technology Across the Globe
HL7 Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR®), the widely adopted, open-source standard from the HL7 International community, celebrates 10 years of international development and implementation. With the ability to streamline the many variations in health information technology (HIT) systems and the capacity to accommodate modern technology, FHIR is at the forefront of healthcare interoperability. In keeping with HL7’s vision of a world where access to health data is readily available to everyone whenever and wherever it is needed, FHIR creates connections between different parts of the healthcare system to facilitate the secure, real-time exchange of data and, ultimately, improve patient care.
Since its inception, FHIR has fostered a collaborative culture. HL7 International Chief Executive Officer Charles Jaffe, M.D., Ph.D., recalls, "The development and adoption of FHIR was advanced by a remarkable and committed international community. The impact that FHIR has had on global healthcare was driven by an unprecedented level of collaboration that today continues to grow." Grahame Grieve, principal at Health Intersections, FHIR product director at HL7 and the inventor of FHIR, agrees. “Most people think about FHIR as a technical specification, but I look at it first of all as a community.”
With open servers, free implementation guides and dedicated FHIR Accelerator programs aimed at continuous development, FHIR maintains an active international community of collaborators. This makes it easy for developers to access the healthcare data they need to build applications so institutions can realize enterprise-level solutions quickly. FHIR is widely used in mobile apps, cloud communications, electronic health record (EHR)-based data sharing and server communications in institutional healthcare provider settings.
Over the last ten years, FHIR has achieved implementation success in several key areas, specifically with the HL7 FHIR Accelerator Program. The Argonaut Project helped enable users of a leading platform to aggregate and access personal health data on their mobile devices, and the integration of decision support algorithms into caregiver workflow. The HL7 DaVinci Project helps payers and providers positively impact clinical, quality, cost and care management outcomes. In additional, the highly anticipated FHIR Release 5 update is expected to be released later next year.
FHIR was built to empower health data interoperability and continues to drive the innovation and collaboration necessary to achieve its mission. By all accounts, the future appears bright for the best-in-class FHIR standard. James Agnew, head geek and chief technology officer at Smile CDR and early FHIR implementer, believes “FHIR is destined to become the underlying ‘network’ that supports health applications everywhere.” Owner and manager at Kern-IT, HL7 fellow and affiliate director for the HL7 International Board of Directors, Diego Kaminker, declares that for “the first time in HIT history – everything you need can be based on one standard: FHIR.”
FHIR provides a next-generation, standardized solution for health data with human readability and real-time exchange that aims to improve patient care. HL7 International recognizes that the success of the last ten years was made possible by the extraordinary efforts of so many. Jaffe sums it up, "In retrospect, none of this could have been achieved without the tireless work of the global FHIR community and the remarkable contributions of many volunteers within the HL7 work groups."
Happy Birthday FHIR!
For the latest on FHIR and to see a very special FHIR birthday video, please visit: http://info.hl7.org/fhir-10th-birthday.