FHIR Testing and Lift-Off to the HL7 Conference


May 2016 HL7 WGM & FHIR

The AEGIS FHIR Team continues to make enhancements to the Touchstone Project and its Test-Driven-Development (TDD) integrated ecosystem. The Touchstone Project is an AEGIS Developers Integration Lab (DIL) initiative – a next generation Open Access / Cloud-based Testing Platform which applies Conformance and Interoperability testing capabilities against the HL7® FHIR® specification. Touchstone has been engineered from the ground up to leverage the new FHIR® TestScript resource. At the May 2016 HL7® FHIR® Connectathon – AEGIS will showcase advancements in our recently deployed Touchstone v2.3.0 with multi-version FHIR support: DSTU 2.0, DSTU 2.1 (Connectathon 11 snapshot) and STU 3 Candidate (Connectathon 12 snapshot). Another enhancement industry and developers will like is the updated FHIR server conformance statement rendering. Additional modernizations to the platform include:

  • Rules Engine
    • Complex rules against message headers and body (that go beyond what TestScript assert previously supported) can now be evaluated using the new Rules Engine.
    • Rules can be implemented in Groovy, Schematron, and XSLT. Support for additional languages will be added in the future.
  • Test Script and Fixture Versioning.
    • Changes to Test Script and Fixture sources are preserved as separate versions. Users are informed of new Test Script and Fixture versions on Test Execution screens.
  • Capture Test System conformance statement for each test execution.
    • Users can now see the conformance statement of each test system involved in test execution at the time of execution on Test Execution screens.
  • Improvements in conformance checks and display of conformance statements.
  • Validations are now performed for multiple FHIR specification versions.

In addition to the FHIR® Connectathon – the HL7® Working Group Meetings are held simultaneously with this event. These WGMs serve two important purposes:

  • They give the HL7 International work groups a chance to meet face-to-face to work on the standards as well as the opportunity to network with industry leaders from around the world.2016 May 2016 - Touchstone Statistics (3)
  • They provide an invaluable educational resource for the healthcare IT community.

Some of the key themes for the May 2016 meeting include:

  • High visibility on the concept and need for interoperability.
  • The desire to implement applications that work—-supporting the need to test during all phases of standards development so that actual implementations might work smoothly.
  • Assistance with development—provide or define the tooling or tool-kits needed in implementation so those working with the HL7 products don’t have to sort this out.
  • Socialize the work that is occurring—so there might be the opportunity to not re-invent the wheel.
  • Interest to ensure that the FHIR work is being done globally because so many organizations are international in their work.

Mario Hyland (@interopguy) from AEGIS will participate the Architecture Review Board (ARB) meeting. And by the wy, AEGIS is a sponsor of this year’s conference! If you are there in Montreal next week, please look for me or Mario and let us share what Touchstone is all about.


About Richard Ettema

Mr. Ettema has more than three decades of experience in software architecture, engineering and consulting. His experience is in application architecture, agile methodologies and helping customers develop, implement and maintain best practices in enterprise software development. Mr. Ettema has worked with small to large private organizations as well as large government organizations developing health care, health insurance, telecom, order entry, customer call tracking, inventory management and financial management applications. Mr. Ettema is the author of AEGIS' public FHIR test client and server, WildFHIR; Senior Architect and Project Lead for AEGIS' FHIR Testing Platform, Touchstone.

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