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Ph.D. Proposal: Timo Ziminski
August 27, 2021 @ 2:00 pm - 3:30 pm EDT
Title: Extending the Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR) Standard with Design Pattern-Like Capabilities by Defining a Framework of Meta Resources
Ph.D. Candidate: Timo Ziminski
Major Advisor: Steven Demurjian
Associate Advisors: Swapna Gokhale and Thomas Agresta
Date/Time: Friday August 27th, 2:00pm
Meeting number: 120 472 6390
Abstract: The Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR) standard from the international Health Language Seven (HL7) organization has been mandated by the United States Office of the National Coordinator to promote the secure exchange of healthcare data for patients using cloud-based APIs. FHIR reformulated the HL7 XML standard by defining over 135 resources that conceptualize the different aspects of healthcare data such as patients, practitioners, organizations, services, appointments, encounters, diagnostic data, and medications. Developers of healthcare applications can select a subset of the resources required to solve their particular problems and orchestrate them within their software by using the standard’s APIs and message formats with minimal effort. However, the standard provides no way to effectively organize a subset of resources into a higher-level construct similar to software design patterns and therefore exposes users to reimplementing solutions when facing problems of the same type in slightly differing environments. In this dissertation proposal, we leverage the design pattern concept to extend the FHIR standard by defining meta resources that are a conceptual construct that clearly defines the involved resources and their interactions into one unified and reusable artifact. By employing meta resources, we introduce the option to use a higher level of abstraction in the process of designing, implementing, and verifying functionalities built on the FHIR standard. For interaction with the core standard, we leverage built-in FHIR extension mechanisms such as FHIR Profiles and Bundle resources to integrate the meta resource into the resource contextualization layer of the FHIR standard. To further illustrate the concepts of this work, we use a mobile health application for medication reconciliation that integrates information from multiple electronic health records as an example.