Interoperability Layer Community

The OpenHIE Interoperability Layer Community (OHIE-IOL) aims to enable easier interoperability between Health Information Systems by providing a forum for discussion and knowledge sharing and by designing and developing an interoperability layer that connects the components within the OHIE.

Our mission is to build and sustain an open community to discuss the challenges of interoperability between health information systems, as well as to design an architecture and develop a reference software application to support easier interoperability between disparate health systems and components. We promote the use of appropriate standards to support best practices for health data exchange.

Benefits of an Interoperability Layer

Manage Security

As the ‘lock’ for an HIE, an Interoperability Layer provides easier management of an HIEs security infrastructure and provides the ability to implement data governance rules to enable you to control which systems have access to which infrastructure services.

Single Entry Point

An Interoperability Layer provides a single point of entry into an HIE which allows requests to be logged and routed or multicast to the systems that make up your HIE infrastructure.


By providing a layer of abstraction between point of service applications and the HIE components, the IL can transform incoming messages to a form that the other HIE components expect and can simplify the business logic requirements of the point of care system by mediating transactions within the HIE.


The Interoperability Layer provides a mechanism for error management and tracking and also provides a view of metrics for monitoring the flow of messages through the HIE.


I’m a Developer I’m an ImplementorConnect with Us

Why Do We Do This?

Our shared vision is a world in which the timely exchange of health information improves health outcomes and saves lives. We aim to enable easier interoperability between disparate health information systems.

Technical Resources


Meet other developers and learn from their experiences and work on common goals.  Join Our Community Group 

Learn about best practices and access expertise, technologies and standards related to an interoperability layer.  Visit Our Wiki Page

Explore using the OpenHIE Interoperability Reference Tool for your project.


Implementation Guide

The first step in the planning process is to do an analysis of the environment in which you are operating. The assessment supports the identification of stakeholders, goals/benefits, systems, and challenges/barriers.

Stakeholder leadership is essential for supporting the successful implementation of an Interoperability Layer. Effective leaders should be identified and join together to form a stakeholder leadership group for the development and implementation of an Interoperability Layer. The group should have shared ownership of the Interoperability Layer and be committed to the outcomes, with one individual having the overall authority for decision-making and conflict resolution.

User stories and data specifications are two ways to describe: “What will the Interoperability Layer achieve?” and “How will it achieve this?” A primary objective of this guide is to promote and facilitate a country driven and user requirements based process. The ideal solution will be responsive to users’ needs and their context.

Using the draft specifications and user stories developed in Step 3 as a foundation to move forward, the next step is to determine resources and develop the project plan to support the implementation process of the Interoperability Layer. This step will include documenting/validating technical solutions, development of additional workflows, and software validation/testing.

After scaling the Interoperability Layer and implementing the core integrations, it should be expected that requirements and requests for interacting with the HIE will evolve over time. For this reason, ongoing support and continued iterative support strategies should remain in place. This can be organized by the roles of the technical support and implementation teams to triage requests for data, system enhancements, integrations, operations support or general troubleshooting among users.

During post production it is important to capture lessons learned. One helpful exercise is to have the team make two lists. The first list should document what went well and should be done that way again. The second list should contain items that can be done differently next time. This exercise is important as long as the learnings are recognised and taken into account for future iterations of the process.

Community Resources


Participate in the discussion group and join our routine meetings to ask questions and get feedback.  Join Our Community Group 

Learn about best practices and access expertise, technologies and standards around interoperability.  Visit Our Wiki Page

Meet other implementers and learn from their experiences. Also use our Implementation Guide.  


Next Meeting