Cerner EHR clients testing app using FHIR technology

Cerner Corporation has released a production version of Health Level 7 (HL7) International's Fast Health Interoperability Resources (FHIR) standard to be tested by Cerner clients using the vendor's Millennium electronic health record and "SMART" apps.

"This next-generation standards framework enables healthcare organizations to utilize Cerner's open platform, which is designed to enable third-party innovators to advance care delivery and improve interoperability capabilities with other FHIR-compliant EHR systems," David McCallie, senior vice president, medical informatics at Cerner, said in an announcement. "This integrated approach will provide clinicians access to 'pluggable apps' directly within their workflows that are designed to expand and transform the way care is delivered."

For instance, using FHIR technology, the app can more closely integrate with the EHR, and pull medications from the patient record.

FHIR is being used to improve interoperability among EHRs. It has been questioned whether the current consolidated-clinical document architecture (C-CDA), used in Stage 2 of the Meaningful Use program, is sufficient to handle the level of interoperability needed in the industry. The JASON task force last year recommended accelerating parallel paths of the C-CDA and FHIR, calling the latter the "best candidate" to leverage existing structures for data sharing.

Last year HL-7--in coordination with several EHR vendors and providers, including Cerner--launched the Argonaut Project to more rapidly advance FHIR and improve data sharing. Interoperability is a cornerstone of the Meaningful Use program, as well as health reform and care coordination.

To learn more:
- read the announcement

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