Category Archive News

HL7 New Zealand Signs MoU With HISO

A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Health Information Standards Organisation (HISO) and HL7 New Zealand (HL7NZ) was signed on 5th November 2020. The MoU exists to recognise the respective roles of both organisations and the ways in which they can work together to use standards for the good of interoperability in the New Zealand health and disability system, and to play our part in the international standards community.

HL7NZ Webinar – Migrating to FHIR® From Previous Versions of HL7®

Many thanks to those of you who were able to attend the latest in our series of Webinars regarding HL7 FHIR Implementation on October 14th. For those wishing to explore links in the presented material, or who were unable to attend the Webinar Presentation can be viewed here.

We are hoping to host at least one more Webinar in this series this year and would welcome suggestions from Members as to any future topics that they would like us to cover, including presentations of their own HL7 FHIR implementation experience to date. Please forward your thoughts and ideas here.

HL7 New Zealand – Spring 2020 Update:

HL7 International recently held its 34th Annual Plenary and Working Group Meeting  and 25th FHIR Connectathon. These events were attended by a combined total of over 1,000 worldwide participants but, due to travel restrictions, the location was the virtual Whova platform rather than a hotel basement!  Despite the challenges of ‘time-shifting’, significant progress was made towards the next releases of the HL7® FHIR® standard. Look out for some detailed announcements about this in the coming weeks.

The New Zealand standards community received a recent boost with the publication of the HISO Interoperability Roadmap which further cements the role of FHIR® in ‘accelerating the shift to a fully interoperable digital health ecosystem’. In support of this HL7 New Zealand is pleased to continue its series of one-hour lunchtime webinars on topics relating to the implementation of FHIR®.

The next in this series will take place on Wednesday 14th October from 12:00 pm to 1:00 pm…

Migrating To FHIR® From Previous Versions of HL7®

This Webinar will be aimed at those seeking to migrate existing implementations, whether based on HL7 version 2 messages or CDA documents. Discussions will also consider whether we should continue to perform any further upgrades within the version 2 ‘product family’ or move directly to FHIR.

We all also consider some of the challenges faced by those already on the road to FHIR API implementation. These include how to use the FHIR collection resources (Bundle, Document, Composition, etc) to satisfy requirements which require a variety of clinical and administrative resources, such as a Patient Summary. Feedback from implementers on their use of FHIR extension will also be canvassed.

This event is being offered, free of charge, to HL7 New Zealand members only. To attend this and future Webinars in the series, we encourage Non-Members to join us by sending an email with your full contact details and we will send you a membership payment invoice. 

Members wishing to attend should register their interest should do so here. Zoom login details will be provided closer to the day.

HL7NZ Webinar – HL7® FHIR® – Foundation Topics for Non-Developers

Many thanks to those of you who attended this Webinar on July 14th. We hope that you found it to be useful; certainly, we have received some positive feedback from participants.  For those wishing to explore links in the presented material, or who were unable to attend the presentation can be viewed here.

This was the first in a series of Webinars that we are planning to present around HL7 FHIR Implementation in New Zealand, so please look out for related emails in the coming weeks. The next session will probably focus on extensions to FHIR for local use; however, we would welcome any suggestions from Members as to any future topics that they would like us to cover and, in general, as to other ways in which the FHIR Community in New Zealand might collaborate.

HL7 New Zealand Executive Board

HL7 New Zealand – Winter 2020 Update

Kia ora koutou,

It’s probably safe to say that some of the least controversial recommendations of the recently published Health & Disability Sector Review relate to the need to accelerate health information interoperability. Many would also agree that the key to achieving this is the conformant and consistent implementation of international standards, so HL7 New Zealand is pleased to announce a series of one-hour lunchtime webinars on topics relating to the implementation of HL7® FHIR®.

The first of these webinars will take place on Tuesday 14th July from 12:00 pm to 1:00 pm…

HL7® FHIR® – Foundation Topics for Non-Developers

This will be aimed principally at Business Analysts, Health Informaticians and Solution Architects looking for a basic introduction to this large and complex standard before seeking greater detail in the Specification itself.  The Webinar will consist of high-level overviews of various foundational topics, such as exchanging FHIR Resources via RESTful Web Services, without requiring any knowledge of software development and related tooling. There will be opportunities to raise questions, both during and after the presentations and also to discuss participation in the FHIR Community both in New Zealand and worldwide.

This event is being offered, free of charge, to HL7 New Zealand members only. To attend this and future Webinars in the series, we encourage Non-Members to join us by sending an email with your full contact details and we will send you a membership payment invoice. 

Members wishing to attend should register their interest with HL7 Chair Peter Jordan. Zoom login details will be provided closer to the day.

Ngā mihi

Peter Jordan 

Chairman, HL7 New Zealand

HL7 FHIR International Connectathon #24 Report

A virtual edition of the tri-annual HL7 FHIR International Connectathon was held over a continual two day period, from 20:00 UTC on Wednesday 13th May to 22:00 UTC on Friday 15th May. This was a resounding success with 677 official participants (plus the odd guest) covering 35 tracks. General sessions were held over a GoTo Meeting, each track had its own Zoom Meeting Address and, as ever, the Zoom Chat site was extremely busy throughout.

Obviously, time differences were a challenge for some participants – particularly in the US-centric tracks, and I think that David Hay found this a constraint on the FHIR Shorthand Track. However, I believe that a combination of time-shifting and long hours worked well for most international (i.e. non-USA) attendees. I was a Co-Leader of the Terminology Services Track where Zoom sessions were attended by US, European, Indian and Anzac representatives. Certainly, it was easier to facilitate break-out sessions virtually than competing for booking slots in a restricted number of conference rooms and we had some productive discussions.

Naturally, providing COVID-19 concepts was a major topic for both terminologists and API implementers. The later were able to present the new LOINC Special Use codes and Answers plus Reference Sets from the new SNOMED International Implementation Guide see here. Several SNOMED members have already created national extensions for COVID-19 concepts; the USA ones can be viewed on the COVID-19 Interoperability Alliance Web Site. Hopefully these will be promoted to the next version of the International Edition.

The event was particularly successful from an education viewpoint (along with testing the specification and implementations, one of the 3 main objectives) a report describing the activity from each track could be found here.

The big question is whether this will now be the preferred means of delivering FHIR Connectathons – both internationally and locally (a question I’ve been asked many times)? I did miss the cross-track conversations and in-person networking – but maybe not the 24 journey, jet lag and hotel food! David made a good point that advance preparation is even more crucial to the success virtual events so, when we are all able to travel internationally again, maybe the organisers should have the final say!

Peter Jordan, Chairman, HL7 New Zealand

19th May, 2020

Chair’s updates from HL7 Sydney 2020

Friday 7 February 2020

HL7 New Zealand is recognised as one of Long Time Affiliates.

Wednesday 5 February 2020

HL7 NZ Chair Emeritus, Dr David Hay speaks in the FHIR for Clinicians session.

HL7 NZ Chair Peter Jordan reports to Wednesday’s General Session in his role as an International Council Co-Chair.

Tuesday 4 February 2020

Kiwi delegation enjoying Morning Tea on Tuesday morning…

Meeting attendance figures announced at the Tuesday Morning General Session 

Monday 3 February 2020

Ed Hammond predicts the demise of bricks and mortar healthcare facilities at the International Council meeting.

Sunday 2 February 2020

HL7 Chair Emeritus David Hay ignites HL7 FHIR Connectathon #23.

Chairman’s Christmas Message 2019

At the conclusion of an exhausting year and, almost unbelievably, another decade, it seems fitting to provide a just a few personal highlights and point those interested in a longer account of 2019 – as viewed by HL7 New Zealand – to my recent Chairman’s Report to the HL7 NZ AGM.

  • HL7® FHIR® R4 – THE standard for creating Digital Health APIs, case closed – there is no viable alternative; adoption of international standards is the critical, pre-condition for interoperability.
  • Increased involvement of clinicians and patients in the development and implementation of HL7 standards – essential members of the community-based approach that has replaced the top-down model disrupted by FHIR. 
  • Digital Health Week NZ – fantastic event in NZ’s finest city (slight hint of bias from this Hamiltonian!); now the leading health informatics conference in the Southern Hemisphere.
  • National Health Information Platform (nHIP) – this year’s most promising newcomer; plenty of challenges ahead, but the logical design is an excellent start.
  • NZ ePrescription Service – finally reaching ‘critical mass’ and increasingly used as a major data asset by the Sector; it’s been a long and hard road!
  • HL7NZ Web Site – new platform, branding and regularly-updated content; now positioned to be the hub for the local HL7 standards community.

Hence, in general, it’s been a positive year – the major exception being that the one gift that I requested (back in January) is unlikely to be delivered by Santa. All I really wanted for Christmas was access to my own digital healthcare record via a FHIR API. My carefully, coded primary care record, now sits securely (I trust) on a cloud server…so in 2020, please set my data free or, to quote ePatient. Dave de Bronkart…‘gimme my damn data’.
Finally, on a more festive, note, I’d like to extend sincere thanks to all of our members and benefactors (notably the Digital and Data Services Team at the Ministry of Health) for their support in the past year and I hope that you and your families all enjoy a well-earned Christmas and New Year break. I look forward to continuing to work together as we strive to improve healthcare outcomes via interoperability in the new decade!
Seasons’ Greetings,
Peter Jordan, Chairman HL7 New Zealand

HL7NZ 25th Anniversary Award was presented to Sysmex New Zealand

HL7NZ 25th Anniversary Award was presented to Sysmex New Zealand as part of the Digital Health Week which took place at Claudelands Events Centre in Hamilton 19-22 November.  HL7 standards have been used in New Zealand for 25 years and throughout that period, Sysmex New Zealand has consistently implemented these standards in their products, evangelised HL7 standards in the broader New Zealand digital health community and offered continuous support for the local HL7 Affiliate – known, since 2004, as HL7 New Zealand.

HL7NZ Annual General Meeting 2019 Report

The 2019 Annual General Meeting was held on Wednesday 20th November at 12:30 pm at the Claudelands Event Centre, Hamilton, during Digital Health Week NZ.  Eleven of the previous Board Members were re-elected along with Koray Atalag (The Clinician) who replaces Graeme Hibbert. The Chairman’s Annual Report, presented to the Meeting, can be found here.

At the first meeting of the new Board, held directly afterwards, the following officers were unanimously elected for two year terms: Peter Sergent (Vice Chairman) and David Moorhouse (Treasurer). Peter Jordan (Chairman) and Linda McKay (Secretary) will continue to serve in their current positions having been elected for two year terms in November 2018.