You’re a software developer drafted to a new healthcare project

You’ve never heard of FHIR, but you’re told you have to use it. The buzz word around the office is ‘interoperability.’

Developers come to FHIR with a set of skills and ‘ways of doing things’ that make some things easy and others hard.

– APIs are easy. We use them all the time.
– Queries are easy. We’re comfortable with query strings.
– Resources are easy. They’re just objects.
– Data types are easy. Every language has them.
– Postman is easy. Familiar.
– And we love the SDK. Makes everything so easy.

Some things look easy to begin with but become hard later on, when we realize how much we got wrong.

– Extensions. Just because you can doesn’t mean you should.
– Profiles. Just doesn’t feel like programming.
– Smart on FHIR. Never as simple as the article said it was.

And then there’s the elephant in the room that nobody takes seriously until it almost derails the project at the eleventh hour.

– Terminology.

When it comes to FHIR, not everything that looks easy is easy.



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