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Newly Launched FHIR-Based Pharmacogenomics API Looks to Accelerate Precision Medicine

August 18, 2016
by Rajiv Leventhal
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A new application programming interface (API) that aims to aid health systems, labs and software developers to accelerate apps focused on precision medicine has been launched by Bellevue, Wash.-based Translational Software.

The company, known for solutions to support labs and providers adopting personalized medicine, developed the API using the Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR) specification, an open-sourced standard for exchanging healthcare information to ensure interoperability. Officials say the API can be used to query the company’s Knowledge-as-a-Service (KaaS) platform for drug-drug-gene intelligence to improve the prescription ordering process, alert clinicians to potential interactions and adverse drug events, and suggest medication alternatives.

The API is available for immediate use. Several leading organizations and independent software vendors are actively using the capability, including the Chan Soon-Shiong Institute of Molecular Research Institute, IT21 Solutions, First Vitals, RX Management, Sanford Health and Synergy Laboratories, the company announced.

“An important frontier of precision medicine is the use of clinical genomic data in routine patient care,” stated Gil Alterovitz, Ph.D., a Harvard Medical School professor in the Division of Medical Sciences, core faculty at the Computational Health Informatics Program in Boston Children’s Hospital and co-chair of HL7’s Clinical Genomics Work Group.

Initial efforts focused on developing FHIR apps that are integrated within the electronic health record (EHR) to provide clinicians with alerts and reports regarding drug efficacy, dosing and potential adverse reactions at the point of care. The API will have increasing relevance to a broad range of health information systems and initiatives over time as genetic testing becomes routine to guide clinical decision making, officials attested.

“One of the biggest impediments to wide-scale use of pharmacogenomics is the difficulty of integrating testing into the clinical workflow at the point where prescribing decisions are being made,” stated Don Rule, CEO, Translational Software. “We see a standardized API as a powerful means of simplifying this integration, and are grateful for the opportunity to collaborate with our partners to flesh out the standard.”



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