The scope of the Evidence resource is to describe the conditional state (population and exposures being considered or compared within a population) with or without the outcomes that knowledge (evidence, assertion, recommendation) is about. The Evidence resource is a commonly bundled series of evidence variables from the “PICO” specification of medical knowledge. The PICO acronym stands for
– Population – the population within which exposures and outcomes are being considered
– Intervention – the conditional state or exposure state being described for which one is expressing the risk of or effect on an outcome
– Comparison – the alternative conditional state or alternative exposure state when one is comparing states for the effect on an outcome
– Outcome – the result or effect of an intervention or exposure in a population
PICO is a universal acronym used in evidence-based medicine communities to clearly express research questions and evidence findings. The Evidence resource allows expression of the higher-order concept for recommendations in healthcare where multiple outcomes are considered, and the higher-order concept/combination for framing research questions.
Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR) is a draft standard describing data formats and elements (known as “resources”) and an application programming interface (API) for exchanging electronic health records. The standard was created by the Health Level Seven International (HL7) health-care standards organization.
Its goal is to facilitate interoperation between legacy healthcare systems, to make it easy to provide healthcare information to healthcare providers and individuals on a wide variety of devices from computers to tablets to cell phones, and to allow third-party application developers to provide medical applications which can be easily integrated into existing systems.
FHIR provides an alternative to document-centric approaches by directly exposing discrete data elements as services. For example, basic elements of healthcare like patients, admissions, diagnostic reports and medications can each be retrieved and manipulated via their own resource URLs (Uniform Resource Locators). FHIR was supported at an American Medical Informatics Association meeting by many EHR (Electronic Health Record) vendors which value its open and extensible nature.