Product RIM

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Product Brief - Reference Information Model (RIM)

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Product Name

HL7 Version 3 Standard: Reference Information Model (RIM)


Standard Category

Health Information Modeling Standards

Integration Paradigm


Normative, ANSI Standard


  • ANSI/HL7 V3 RIM, R1-2003
  • ANSI/HL7 V3 RIM, R2-2010


The Reference Information Model (RIM) is the combined consensus view of information from the perspective of the HL7 working group and the global HL7 affiliates. The RIM is the ultimate source from which all HL7 Version 3 protocol specification standards draw their information-related content.


The RIM is a static model of health and healthcare information as viewed within the scope of HL7 standards development activities. The RIM is essential to HL7’s ongoing mission of increasing precision of data. The RIM became an ANSI-approved standard in late 2003 and was published as an International Organization for Standardization (ISO) standard in September 2006.

The RIM provides a static view of the information needs of HL7 Version 3 standards. It includes class and state-machine diagrams and is accompanied by use case models, interaction models, data type models, terminology models, and other types of models to provide a complete view of the requirements and design of HL7 standards.

Please note that the Reference Information Model is updated on a quarterly basis, with minimal changes.

Business Case (Intended Use, Customers)

The RIM, along with the Data Types and Vocabulary form the foundation for all information modeling within HL7. The models derived from these serve as documents, data for services, and messages. As such, they are "part" of every HL7 Version 3 standard and have the same "customers" as do the standards defined from them.


The essence of Version 3 is the establishment of an information modeling foundation that is:

  • relatively stable,
  • able to support the representation of all concepts in the HL7 domain of interest, and
  • is technology-neutral in order to allow implementation in a variety of environments as the users technology evolves.

The Vocabulary, RIM and Data types provide this foundation.

Implementations/ Case Studies (Actual Users)

  • Every Actual User of another V3 Product - CDA, Messaging or Services
  • Those that use the RIM as a model for persisting data (see Category:RIMBAA)


Work Groups


Certification Available
  • RIM Certified Specialist


  • RIM Intropduction: [1] (presented at HIMSS 2011)

Relationship to/ Dependencies on, other standards

Links to current projects in development