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Conformance Testing of Healthcare Data Exchange Standards for EHR Certification



Robert D. Snelick


Seamlessly sharing and using healthcare data as intended among distributed healthcare information systems is difficult. The adoption and adherence to clear and unambiguous standards can help manage this complexity. Well-defined standards, and conformance to those standards, provide the foundation for reliable, functioning, usable, and interoperable healthcare information systems. Recent federal programs (in the US) have included incentive payments for healthcare providers who adopt and “meaningfully use” certified electronic health record (EHR) technologies; however, unless these products are developed using clearly-defined standards, the adoption rate will increase, but the promise of improved quality of healthcare will not be realized. The proliferation of healthcare information systems designed without compliance to standards will likely exacerbate, not lessen, current patient care challenges by creating a landscape saturated with systems lacking usefulness, usability, and interoperability that will be rejected by the end-user community. Additionally, the standards must be used and deployed as intended, and conformance testing is the process that helps ensure adherence to the standards. In this paper, we explore conformance testing and the tools that are used to perform HL7 v2-based conformance testing for certification of EHR technologies.
Proceedings Title
HIMS'15 – The 2015 International Conference on Health Informatics and Medical Systems
Conference Dates
July 27-30, 2015
Conference Location
Las Vegas, NV


Conformance, Conformance Testing, Data Exchange Standards, Healthcare Information Systems, Interoperability.
Created July 27, 2015, Updated February 19, 2017