Looking for a reliable FHIR laboratory interface? FHIR stands for Fast Health Interoperability Resources. This health data sharing standard, developed by HL7, is a vendor-neutral, developer-friendly standard for exchanging health information through APIs. This standard is built on the concept of resources. And many resources have been developed to meet the needs of laboratories and healthcare providers.

Before the FHIR standard was developed, the most popular standard for sharing EHR data with the laboratories was HL7. But using HL7 comes with many challenges.

Some of the challenges posed by the HL7 standard include:

  • Poor enforcement of the standard by vendors
  • Weak security protocols
  • Poor fusion with established web-based data sharing protocols

The FHIR standard offers the following benefits that address these and many other issues associated with HL7 and further interoperability and data sharing standards:

  • FHIR enables developers to use Javascript Object Notation (JSON).
  • FHIR offers more flexibility and atomic data sharing rather than detailed message and data formatting.
  • Strong support from the U.S. government
  • Support for a modern framework that enables patients to access and move their health data through web or mobile access

FHIR is based on resources rather than formatted messages. This makes it possible to request a subset of data, whether for patient data or blood test data in a laboratory. Here are some of the ways to harness the power of the FHIR API to retrieve lab information efficiently.

Know the Use Cases to Be Fulfilled

You can use FHIR resources to access data in various ways. Examples of use cases for lab test retrieval include:

  • Looking up all lab tests conducted for a single patient: The query may be sent by a clinician or the patient.
  • Retrieving all the tests in a particular period: A single patient may have many blood tests conducted within a period. In this case, applying a date range is essential since the quantity of data may be large
  • Finding all the tests of a specific type performed for a single patient: A good example is querying the resource to know all the complete blood count tests conducted for a particular patient.
  • Finding all ordered tests yet to be completed: When a clinician has ordered tests, and the results are pending, a query can retrieve the pending test orders.

Avoid Complex Queries

When you want to create a complex report from lab test data, carefully examine the resources that contain the data you need to retrieve. If the data for the report is scattered among different resources, it may require a complex query.

Complex queries put a strain on server resources. So such queries may need to be handled through smaller sub-queries or modified completely to reduce the server resources required to complete them.

Building an FHIR lab interface is not a simple task. Let an expert handle the intricate details for you if you want to maximize the benefits of using this technology to transfer, retrieve, and share data in your organization.

Connect With an FHIR Laboratory Interface Expert Today

Call Lifepoint Informatics at 877.522.8378 to discuss your interoperability and FHIR API development needs. Visit our contact page to schedule a free consultation session and see a demo of our interoperability solutions.