From detailed guides to online courses – resources are available to provide you with the knowledge necessary to build and integrate EHR applications.

Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA)

The EHR is built using an architectural design strategy known as service-oriented architecture. The fundamental concepts are that it should be: 

  • Service-based: business functionality is made available in the form of ‘services’, which can be fairly granular, such as ‘get client demographics’ (from the client registry (CR)), or ‘get lab results for this client’ (from OLIS).
  • Specification-based: each service conforms to a specification describing how to use the service interface specifications or contract. 
  • Re-usable: once a service definition is complete and published, one party can write a program to provide the service exactly as described in the service definition. Another party can use the service by invoking it as described in the service definition. Both the provider and user of the service can independently build the service and implement applications to use it without needing to know how it is implemented or deployed.
  • Combinable: services can be combined to execute larger business processes, transactions, or applications.

This service-oriented approach allows eHealth Ontario to create and publish a collection of service interfaces for each of its key offerings. As long as the main business elements don’t change, the service interfaces remain the same. By using service-oriented architecture, the technologies that use the EHR can remain independent from the technologies that provide the EHR. Consequently, the technologies underlying the business services can change independently as eHealth Ontario and its partners evolve, providing an effective long-term approach to business interoperability while avoiding technical stagnation.

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