Interoperability Working Group and XML
Welcome to the home page of the NHSScotland Interoperability Working Group.
The successful interoperation of a growing number of national eHealth applications is critical to the eHealth strategy and hence NHSScotland.
The risk of intergration errors was identified in 2003 and the eHealth Infrastructure Programme Board established the Interoperability working group (IoWG).
The IoWG, which meets quarterly, has representation of all national eHealth applications. It is intended to head off and resolve interoperability issues related to the interfaces, web services and messages between the national applications. The Terms of reference of the group is given below.
To date the IoWG has provided a very useful forum for dialogue. Issues and planned changes are highlighted discussed and in many cases avoided or resolved. So far the group has been relatively informal and outside the management of the various applications. The group now reports to the Architecture and Design division of the eHealth directorate of Scottish Government.
IoWG owns the XML data schemas for connections between national applications (i.e. messages, interfaces, web services, etc.) and responsible for inspecting planned changes to those schemas and ensuring that proposed changes either don't effect other applications or are flagged with sufficient notice to allow the effected applications to plan their own developments and releases to avoid problems.
Terms of Reference for the Group
- Members will comprise representatives from significant nationally owned systems as approved by the eHealth Infrastructure Board.
- The group will be an approval body for national XML standards and web services in use in NHSScotland. Individual national systems are expected to develop their own XML and web service standards in line with OSIAF and any NHS national XML standards.
- The group will resolve ownership of national XML schemas where necessary.
- The group will recognise other interoperability standards approved by the NHS Information Standards Group and OSIAF and produce a plan for compliance.
- It is recognised that not all interoperability within legacy systems uses XML or OSIAF standards. The group will recognise exceptions and agree a migration plan and monitor progress.
- The group will coordinate change management of intended interface specifications from fellow suppliers where such specifications may impact on peer systems in the network.
- The group will recommend development of new national standards relating to interfaces and interoperability where necessary.
- The group will report and make recommendations to the Infrastructure Board.
- The group will establish formal liaison and coordination with various standards groups as approved by the eHealth Infrastructure Board.
If you wish to be involved in the IoWG please contact Paul Woolman