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SDOH Data Element Profiles

Owning Workgroup

HL7 Patient Care (PC WG)

Committee Approval Date:

Sept 2019

Publishing Lead

Cheng Liu (

Contributing or Reviewing Work Groups

  HL7 Vocabulary (VOCAB)

FHIR Development Project Insight ID


Scope of coverage

The Gravity SDOH Data Element FHIR implementation guide (IG) intends to formalize the SDOH-specific data-elements sufficient to support screening, diagnosis, care planning, treatment and secondary uses such as research, risk adjustment, and quality measurement. The FHIR implementation guidance focuses on data elements determined to be relevant by the Gravity Project Community to three core use cases: 1. Gather SDOH data for an individual in the clinical care setting, 2. Track SDOH related interventions to completion, and 3. Share SDOH data for aggregation and secondary uses.

The implementation guide is expected to cover these three core use cases first for one SDOH domain (Food Insecurity) and over time it will expand to cover the data elements for these three use cases in other SDOH domains, e.g. Housing Instability, Transportation Barriers.

Content location

Proposed IG realm and code


Maintenance Plan

The PC WG is aware and willing to maintain the content in the future. The Gravity Project engages a large multistakeholder group committed and funded to evolve and maintain the content.

This IG comprises FHIR Profiles for Food Security core data elements for which the Gravity Project is developing stakeholder consensus around the definition and use of the data in care activities including: screening, clinical assessment, diagnosis, goal setting, intervention planning and intervention performing.

In the first 'For Comment' cycle the terminology bindings are preliminary, and in some cases, defined in terms of placeholder codes only.

Our team is collaborating with SNOMED CT, Regenstrief (LOINC) and Code System SDOs who steward over ICD-10, CPT and HCPCs to organize and fund the required unique concept authoring efforts that will be necessary to sufficiently define the data-elements and value-sets represented in the 'For Comment' May 2020, and STU Sept 2020 ballot cycles.

Short Description

FHIR Profiles for data elements used to document an individual's social risks and social needs in the clinical care setting.

Long Description

The first iteration of the SDOH Data Element Profiles IG will be focused on the core modeling structures, patterns and informational relationships between these architectural elements for the Food Insecurity SDOH Domain. Subsequent iterations will expan the IG to cover two additional SDOH domains: Housing Instability and Transportation Barriers.

This IG defines FHIR profiles for data elements that are envisioned to be recorded in the clinical care setting.

Involved parties

The sdoh IG is being authored through a formal collaboration under the FHIR Accelerator Program through the Gravity Project working together with the larger HL7 Community through HL7-PC and HL7-VOCAB workgroups. The effort engages a wide range of organizations and individual contributors that informally refer the themselves as the Gravity Community, which includes representatives from 13 different types of organizations, standards developers, various health IT vendors, and interested solution vendors.

The American College of Radiology (ACR) has will established and long standing guidelines that have been in common and broad use for almost two decades. The Radiological Society of North America (RSNA) and the Society of Breast Imaging (SBI) which the breast focused arm of the ACR are all represented on the subject matter expert team that is reviewing all content and will be used as the definitive source of truth for all our near-term deliverables.

Expected implementations

 TBD - Just beginning to confirm our initial participants for the December 2019 and January 2020 Connectathons.  
 Several implementers have expressed interest for the December 2019 and January 2020 Connectathons.

Content sources

  Social Intervention Research and Evaluation Network,
  American Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics

Example Scenarios

  Capture and delivery of breast radiology reports to EHR systems
  Reporting to cancer registries
  Reporting for clinical trials

IG Relationships

The SDOH FHIR IG is intended to target compliance with US Core v4. It also will be leveraging C-CDA On FHIR for FHIR R4, Da Vinci CDex, SDC, BSER, and Da Vinci QDEM


  For Comment May 2020 Ballot
  STU September 2020 Ballot

FMG Notes