Exploring FHIR APIs

15 minutes

About FHIR

FHIR®, which stands for Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources, is the latest syntactical standard published by Health Level Seven International (HL7®) for exchanging healthcare data. FHIR resources include patient, facility, device, and drug data, to name a few. The architecture for FHIR exchange follows the client-server model, in which a client (such as an end user or an application) sends requests for a FHIR server to handle or retrieve data. FHIR defines and stores data in resources and determines how it may be handled, using operations. Each FHIR server provides a Capability Statement describing which of the many FHIR data structures and operations are supported.

RESTful FHIR servers may provide an API specification in addition to the Capability Statement. A RESTful FHIR server is one in which all capabilities conform to RESTful standards, and an API is written in the Open API 2.0 standard. These APIs are useful for developers who want to manually or programmatically discover the available resources and routes.

InterSystems API Manager is a containerized tool for API management in InterSystems IRIS for Health that can act as a proxy, routing and monitoring calls from clients before they reach the server. It also includes a development portal for viewing and testing APIs.