HL7 Survival Guide Chapter 5 - Vendors, Consultants, and Interface Specifications

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This guide is for healthcare integration analysts and their managers. If you’re building your interfaces in house, you’ll be dealing with clinical system vendors. If you’re outsourcing interface development, you’ll be working with consultants In this chapter, learn what issues to avoid and what deliverables to demand.

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HL7 Survival Guide Chapter 5 - Vendors, Consultants, and Interface Specifications

  1. 1. HL7 SURVIVAL GUIDE CHAPTER 5 A publication of A supplement to the HL7 Survival Guide, available at http://caristix.com/blog/category/hl7-survival-guide/
  2. 2. WWW.CARISTIX.COM SHARE THE SLIDE DECK HL7 SURVIVAL GUIDE CHAPTER 5 Caristix software brings your whole interfacing process together in a single, powerful platform. 2 ABOUT CARISTIX VENDOR- AGNOSTIC Work with any interface engine. NO MORE TRIAL AND ERROR Scope it right. Manage requirements. CUT TIME-TO- GO-LIVE Up to 50%. CLEAR YOUR INTERFACING BACKLOG Simplify dramatically. Align teams. REQUEST A DEMO http://promo.caristix.com/demo/
  3. 3. WWW.CARISTIX.COM SHARE THE SLIDE DECK CHAPTER 5: Vendors, Consultants, and Interface Specialists
  4. 4. WWW.CARISTIX.COM SHARE THE SLIDE DECK HL7 SURVIVAL GUIDE CHAPTER 5 After assessing clinical interoperability issues (Ch. 4), start building your interfaces. 4 Read on to see issues to avoid when dealing with clinical system vendors and consultants
  5. 5. WWW.CARISTIX.COM SHARE THE SLIDE DECK HL7 SURVIVAL GUIDE CHAPTER 5 • Discuss interoperability and HL7 during the initial negotiation • Approach your manager before negotiations and get involved. • Highlight the issues that come up with interoperability and HL7 are not addressed during negotiations • Your goal is to avoid project complications • Set yourself and your manager up for a smooth, successful project 5 1. Negotiating an Interface
  6. 6. WWW.CARISTIX.COM SHARE THE SLIDE DECK HL7 SURVIVAL GUIDE CHAPTER 5 • The vendor keeps control of the project and interface • You pay for additional needs. • Knowledge walks out the door with the consultants. • To avoid this, ask for documentation including the interface specification in the contract. • Documentation should detail, at a minimum: • Which systems are linked/interfaced • Which messages are exchanged • Which message formats are used 6 2. Black Box Syndrome
  7. 7. WWW.CARISTIX.COM SHARE THE SLIDE DECK HL7 SURVIVAL GUIDE CHAPTER 5 7 3. Vendor Lock-in • Some interface vendors or consultants introduce their own intellectual property into the interface. • In such cases, your organization has license to use the interface, but not full ownership of the interface. • You’ll need to pay the vendor for any required changes or updates you’d like to see.
  8. 8. WWW.CARISTIX.COM SHARE THE SLIDE DECK HL7 SURVIVAL GUIDE CHAPTER 5 • In the past, the clinical technology vendor would drive the spec and customers had to conform to the requirements. • Now: the hospital drives the spec and vendors must conform. • Though more expensive initially, the process is smoother for the hospital, especially as hospitals are increasingly part of HIEs and merge to form large hospital groups or IDNs. • You need the right infrastructure (i.e., the right HL7 software and integration engine, configured to meet your organization’s needs) and culture to support this approach, whether you handle interface implementation in house or outsource it. 8 4. Who Drives the Interface Specification
  9. 9. WWW.CARISTIX.COM SHARE THE SLIDE DECK HL7 SURVIVAL GUIDE CHAPTER 5 • A good integration engine is a great building block. • You also need supporting technology and a culture that help you – and anyone else who gets involved at any time – manage and update the engine and interfaces over time. • Look for software and technology that simplify the process of generating, updating, and managing specifications, requirements, test scenarios and other documentation associated with your engine and data exchange work. • Develop a repository that provides a central location for anyone with permission to access the documentation. 9 5. Supporting Technology
  10. 10. WWW.CARISTIX.COM SHARE THE SLIDE DECK HL7 SURVIVAL GUIDE CHAPTER 5 • Culture and approach can make or break a consulting engagement or in-house project. • Make sure you drive the show with consultants • Set clear expectations • Control deliverables – Clear definitions and due dates • Use documentation to ensure clarity and accountability • Ensure structured test methodology is used • Clearly define your acceptance criteria 10 6. Culture
  11. 11. WWW.CARISTIX.COM SHARE THE SLIDE DECK HL7 SURVIVAL GUIDE CHAPTER 5 • HL7 conformance profiles (also known as profiles or interface specifications). HL7 profiles should at a minimum provide a list of messages, segments (including z-segments), fields, data types, and typical code sets or data. • Gap analysis between systems to connect. Gap analysis sets the scope of the interfacing project. Read more about gap analysis in this Caristix white paper. • Test scenarios. Vendors typically provide you with a boilerplate validation guide to ensure the interface works as expected. ensure that your organization’s clinical workflows are covered. Make sure the guide covers real-life and specific scenarios you encounter in your environment. 11 Demand These Deliverables
  12. 12. WWW.CARISTIX.COM SHARE THE SLIDE DECK HL7 SURVIVAL GUIDE CHAPTER 5 • Test system. Understand how they’re going to document test results and don’t sign off on acceptance criteria unless your clinical workflows are covered. • Message samples and test messages. Critical for testing prior to go-live as well as post-go-live for troubleshooting. • Process and workflow maps. This rounds out your view of your interfacing ecosystem. Complement the message structure and content details from HL7 profiles with good process and workflow maps for future interfacing asset management. 12 Demand These Deliverables (cont.)
  13. 13. WWW.CARISTIX.COM SHARE THE SLIDE DECK HL7 SURVIVAL GUIDE CHAPTER 5 • Chapter 6 in the HL7 Survival Guide • Interfacing Artifacts: HL7 Conformance Profiles or Interface Specifications – Once you have a vendor or consultant strategy in place, and you’ve identified the artifacts you need, you’ll need to start developing the interfaces. The next chapters walk you through that process. Learn more in Chapter 6. – Blog link: http://caristix.com/blog/2012/11/hl7-survival- guide-chapter-6/ – Slide deck on Slideshare: coming soon. 13 UP NEXT: CHAPTER 6
  14. 14. WWW.CARISTIX.COM SHARE THE SLIDE DECK HL7 SURVIVAL GUIDE CHAPTER 5 Is a recommendation unclear? Disagree with something we said? Let us know! We thrive on feedback. Contact Us support@caristix.com 1-877-872-0027 14 QUESTIONS? FEEDBACK? © Caristix 2013. All rights reserved.

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