The long-term strategy is to send Transfer of Care documents by direct electronic transmission, nationwide, including SNOMED CT encoded diagnosis, procedures, allergies and dm+d encoded medication information.
Providers are reminded that as detailed in the NHS England Standard Contract (technical guidance section 39.22) that by 1 October 2018, they must have aligned their acute inpatient and day case discharges, Emergency Care discharges, Mental Health discharges and OutPatient Clinic Letters with the nationally published specifications and be sending these by electronic transmission using a structured message specification.
NHS Digital has taken the decision to move directly to Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR) based structured document standards for Transfer of Care, deprecating the current HL7 v3 CDA Transfer of Care specifications.
FHIR has become the international industry standard so the decision has been taken to migrate to FHIR now to prevent a more complex migration in the future which would result in greater clinical risk and higher costs for NHS providers and NHS clinical system suppliers.
The Transfer of Care FHIR messages will use the ITK3 (Interoperability Toolkit) specification available here: https://developer.nhs.uk/interoperability-tool-kit-itk-specification-versions/
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