The early adoption of V3, an HL7 Standard, has been in the following areas:
- Applications without legacy communication requirements – environments where each end of the interface can be tightly controlled and where exchange of data with legacy applications is not required. Examples include the US Centers for Disease Control with state-level reporting for the National Electronic Disease Surveillance System and the US Food and Drug Administration’s clinical trial reporting purposes of electrocardiograms.
- New communications environments – those where HL7 V2 was never or rarely used historically – for example, in the Netherlands for physician-to-physician communications.
- Politically homogeneous deployments – in locations/regions of the world where one government agency can focus the efforts and force the use of V3. Examples include:
- National Health Service, National Programme for IT, and Connecting for Health projects in the United Kingdom where many clinical software applications are being replaced or upgraded and a national data exchange spine is being built.
- Canadian Institute for Health Information has some localization standards produced for V3 primarily in the area of Claims and Reimbursements.
To date, HL7 V3 has not been widely adopted within the United States as a means to exchange clinical data. With one Normative Edition coming out per year, current V2 users often express uncertainty as to when to enter the V3 world. Current HL7 V2 US-centric vendors are generally in a wait-and-see mode, until their customers (US hospitals, clinics, labs, imaging centers) or a regulatory agency demand it.
An obvious question can be asked: “Will HL7 V2 simply disappear now that V3.0 is released?” We believe the answer is “no.” Millions of dollars and countless hours have gone into developing and maintaining HL7 V2 interfaces worldwide. From a financial perspective alone, it is inconceivable that HL7 messaging that uses V2 would quickly disappear.
Latest posts by Dave Shaver (see all)
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