With FHIR to more use of artificial intelligence in medicine

Building up on the first Policy Briefing of the German Israeli Health Forum for Artificial Intelligence (GIHF-AI), ELNET-Germany’s digital health innovation project, on the topic of health data interoperability, this briefing addresses the implementation of FHIR standards in healthcare institutions. With a guest contribution by Dr. Uri Lerner, Project Manager, Maccabi Healthcare Services (MHS), and support from Prof. Dr. Sylvia Thun, Director, Core Unit eHealth and Interoperability (CEI) at Charité.

The use of artificial intelligence (AI) in medicine stands or falls on the quantity, quality, and especially the interoperability of health data used to train and test AI. In this regard, there is now a broad consensus on the part of science, medicine, nursing, informatics, politics and business.

At its fourth meeting in August 2022, for example, the Interop Council made clear that the implementation of Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR) was essential for digitization in healthcare. International data standards such as FHIR are also essential in the EU context, with a view to the European Health Data Space (EHDS).

In particular, FHIR acts as a common language when working with highly digitized countries such as Israel, which is particularly interesting for collaborative projects due to its wealth of medical data. There, the story of implementing the FHIR standard began around 2018, when Maccabi Healthcare Services, Israel’s second-largest health maintenance organization (HMO), announced it would use FHIR resources as the basis for its new data model.