Thursday, November 8, 2018

Reassessing HealthIT Standards

After spending umpteen years having a pretty good handle on what's important and where to spend my time, I'm now back at (mostly) square one, having to reassess the standards in flight in HL7, IHE and various other organizations after being out of many loops over the past few years on the implementation side.  For each of about 17 standards organizations, I have to assess what they are doing, and how important it is to me (and to my employer), and then to work out what my strategy should be.  All at the same time sucking from a tremendous fire hose.

Below are links to where you can find out more information for your own assessments, and my thoughts from my current investigations.  While I track many general IT standards; W3C, IETF, Oasis, et cetera, generally require too much in the way of resources [both time and money], and others working in these are generally more qualified than I to handle that work, so those aren't listed. 

HL7: There's a lot of activity around FHIR (of course), and still some activity around CDA (new guides building on C-CDA).  Other things of note: SMART on FHIR, CQL and QUICK. Also, Argonaut and Da Vinci projects can be expected to ballot or contribute some materials back through the HL7 processes.  Attachments is undergoing a shift in focus, and given what's going on with Da Vinci, this should be an interesting time for that work group.  This is an important place to be engaged if you are interested in Health Information Exchange.

IHE: ITI and PCC don't have a lot new to speak of, there's some maintenance work that needs to happen, as well perhaps as some revival.  ITI is considering whether to go to a continuous (quarterly) work cycle, something I tried unsuccessfully to do in PCC for years.  This is a good thing, I think, because it allows for adoption of things in a more timely fashion.  QRPH on the other hand has a few things that seem to be quite attractive, including new work on Aggregate Date Exchange (ADX) [FHIR-based this time, though why they didn't start there is a mystery to me], CQL (an exotic but interestingly useful language for quality measurement and clinical decision support), and PDMP's (that we've seen popping up all over the place in the US).

ISO TC215: There's some interesting things going on here, but not much for my needs.  Much of it is either medical device, or process oriented.

ASTM: Haven't heard a peep in a few years here. Drill down to the sublinks and you'll see few if any new work items. 

OpenID: Something to watch, especially as it relates to SMART on FHIR.

NCPDP: A place to keep my eye on, especially as it relates to PDMP and APIs.

CARIN: Some interesting work on patient facing APIs, a new entre into the space that bears paying attention to.

Carequality: Some new workgroups are forming, FHIR is coming.

CommonWell: Biggest news from CommonWell over the past 12 months has been the connection to Carequality.  I'm not seeing much else, but also not digging too deeply either.

X12: Not really doing it for me.  Everything interesting happening in standards for the Payer sector seems to be discussed in either HL7 Attachments or the Da Vinci Project right now, at least as far as I'm concerned.  If you work for a payer, your mileage could certainly vary.

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