99 Reasons Why Interfacing is Challenging

By | Published: September 17th, 2013

What is Your Biggest Interfacing Challenge?

To gain insight into the issues our users are facing, there is one key question we ask when a reader downloads a Caristix software trial, white paper, or article: what is your biggest interfacing challenge?

Here are 99 of them.

1. Working as a third party to large health systems and independent physician practices.2. Communication.3. Health information management.4. Custom work.5. Ask on Entry (AOE) prompt question validation at the ordering facility.6. Compatibility between several different platforms; convince [...]

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Categories : HL7 Interfacing

Validation Tasks During the Interface Lifecycle

By | Published: September 3rd, 2013

How to Handle Break-Fix Issues

During the validation phase of the interface lifecycle, you’re running tests. Here’s more on testing: test scenarios and test systems as well as message samples and test messages.  One other thing you may be doing is break-fix work. With break-fix work, you’re looking to solve very specific issues. And you need to get the answers quickly, share the information right away, or fix the interface yourself.

There are many ways to go about doing this. Some people go [...]

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Categories : HL7 Interfacing Testing

Caristix Message Player Software Now Available

By | Published: February 18th, 2013

No-brainer Message Player buttons

Message Player, our free HL7 listener/router utility designed for HIT software developers, interface developers, and interface analysts, is now out.

You might have seen other HL7 listeners and routers out there. What makes Message Player different is that it’s dead-easy to use. There are no bells and whistles. It’s independent of other software and engines, so once you’ve downloaded the installation package, you can run it on a desktop machine and get going quickly.

Why Use Message Player

first [...]

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Caristix Reader Beta Shipped This Week

By | Published: August 19th, 2011

We’ve shipped our latest software to beta testers. And we’ve given the product a name: Caristix Reader. Like Adobe Reader, it’s free.

Looking for more info on the beta and Caristix Reader? Here’s a stack of FAQs from our on-boarding calls with beta testers.

What does it do? In a nutshell, Caristix Reader “reads” HL7 interface specifications:

Reverse-engineer an interface profile or specification from a stack of HL7 messages.
Navigate the profile, and edit it. Consult it whenever.
Send a profile to a colleague or [...]

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Categories : HL7 Interfacing

What if HL7 interface specifications were easy to document?

By | Published: November 23rd, 2010

Some organizations call them HL7 conformance profiles, others call them HL7 interface specifications. They’re all talking about a description of the data format used for exchange between systems within a care facility.

The terminology might not be consistent, but the challenge is: documentation. How do you document conformance profiles so that the description is up-to-date and trustable?

3 HL7 Documentation Issues
1. Creation is Time Consuming

Documenting an HL7 specification requires a fair amount of effort. Applications exchanging data through the HL7 standard usually [...]

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Categories : HL7 Interfacing

HL7 Interface Conformance Profile Template

By | Published: September 14th, 2010

I recently had a discussion with some of our partners around conformance profiles and templates. Collectively, we haven’t come across an industry-standard template. Some organizations build their own. Others decide to go without because templates can take time and effort to set up. We think a conformance profile should help you clearly and concisely communicate what your system expects in terms of data exchange. In healthcare, this isn’t a trivial task. Learn more about conformance profiles in healthcare, which we [...]

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Categories : HL7 Interfacing

What is an HL7 Conformance Profile?

By | Published: September 9th, 2010


Let’s start with the formal definition, introduced by the HL7 organization in the v2.5 specification. Here is an excerpt from section 2.12:

Definition: An HL7 message profile is an unambiguous specification of one or more standard HL7 messages that have been analyzed for a particular use case. It prescribes a set of precise constraints upon one or more standard HL7 messages.

In other words, this is a description of the data and messages that an interface sends and/or receives. The description covers [...]

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Categories : HL7 Interfacing

4 Tips for Smoother HL7 Interface Validation

By | Published: August 17th, 2010

What can you do to improve the HL7 interface validation process on your next implementation project?

I was on-site at a hospital where a vendor was doing a product upgrade. The vendor and the hospital IT team were both committed to getting it done right, so the 2-week interface validation was thorough. That investment pays off. The upfront work pays off down the line in reduced help desk wait time and service calls.

Based on this experience, here are 4 tips to [...]

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Categories : HL7 Interfacing

Gap Analysis in HL7 Interface Deployment, Part 2

By | Published: August 3rd, 2010

In Part 1 of this series on HL7 gap analysis, I covered the need to identify gaps before starting to configure an interface, and explained why gaps happen. Today, I’m going to talk about gap analysis steps and the limitations you need to plan for.

Gap Analysis Steps 1. Obtain vendor conformance profile. Vendor analysts start out with an HL7 conformance profile for the product they’re deploying. The profile documents the specific trigger events and segments used by the application. It [...]

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Categories : HL7 Interfacing

Gap Analysis in HL7 Interface Deployment, Part 1

By | Published: July 27th, 2010

Nine times out of ten when a hospital deploys a new software system, the new system will need to exchange data with existing information systems in order to deliver on expected value. Even with fully integrated vendors like Epic and others, hospitals still have data from flowsheets from monitoring systems and medical devices to pull in through an interface.

Many vendors provide connectivity libraries and most hospital deploy interface engines to cope with connectivity and interfacing issues. But before they can [...]

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Categories : HL7 Interfacing
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