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Implementation FAQ:Getting started

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How do I get started with HL7v3?

The HL7v3 Normative Edition is the most systematic source for the HL7 V3 information you could use.

Such a general question about making use of V3 is really hard to answer. I do not believe we have any documentation specifically oriented at your question. The only answer I can give is to go through the most recent ballot package starting with the V3 guide. Then read the sections on data types, the RIM, messaging infrastructure, the XML ITS, and the domain sections that cover the application or applications of interest. Read the data types section with great care.

However, it might be more useful to answer with a question instead. Can you provide more information on what you would like to do with V3? The more detail you can give, the more we can offer focused suggestions. Questions should eb posted to one of the committee lists -- this is better than emailing individuals because you have a wider pool to get responses from, and the responses that you give will be reviewed (and commented on if need be) by others on the list -- so you are more likly to get a timely answer, and it is more likely to be useful. Also messages to the list are harvested for material to go into this implementation FAQ,a nd into the standard itself, so that others do not have to ask the same question in future. So please do keep the questions comming.

All in all, today’s HL7 is really carried forward via oral tradition.

How do I use HL7v3 in my applications?

It is relevant to note that HL7 was not developed as a tool for application development. It was developed as a tool for standardizing the exchange of information between systems. I do think that you find many of the insights created within V3 useful in application development work. However, you should not (please don’t) read V3 as a manual for applications development.