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Digital signature for header participations - author, authenticator, legalAuthenticator

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Submitted by: Ioana Singureanu Revision date: <<Revision Date>>
Submitted date: 11/17/2009 Change request ID: <<Change Request ID>>


Currently there is no way include a digital signature in the document header along with the identity of an author, authenticator, or legal authenticator. This information is often mandatory for legally binding documents.


High: The workaround "Signature" section (see Dicussion) is inefficient and duplicative of metadata specified in the HL7 RIM (Participation.signatureText). CBCC WG Wiki


  • Add "signatureText" attribute to Participation occurrences in the document header.


Needed for Consent Directive representations. The current workaround is to specify a "Signature" section in structure body of a document because we cannot use the Participation.signatureText for legalAuthenticator, authenticator, etc. specified in the header. The following workaround would be eliminated in CDA R3 if this proposal were approved:

              <section classCode="DOCSECT" moodCode="EVN">
                   <text> This section contains the signatures of the relevant  
                   <entry typeCode="COMP">
                       <observationMedia classCode="OBS" moodCode="EVN">
                           <value mediaType="application/pdf" representation="B64"> 

This method, however, does not specify how to which authenticator is belongs, the narrative block has to specify using references.


The item was introduced during the SDWG meeting - Nov. 17th, 2009.

Recommended Action Items


March 30, 2010 SDWG: Agree. Opposed: 0; Abstain: 0; Approve: 6.