I had an interesting encounter with some data this morning.
As you know, I have been obsessed with the <entry> component of the CDA. Well, I found a screaming example of why interoperability is having such a difficult time here in America.
Consider an example CDA taken from here.
Here’s the CDA <text> component. Remember, the <text> component is the human readable part we see.
Here’s the true content of the <entry> component formatted in a friendly format. Remember, the <entry> component is the part the computer understands.
There’s not much “real” data there. Let’s see why.
The actual <entry> component for the first line item is shown below. I have highlighted in yellow the truly offensive aspects. There are no dates. Yet the <text> component lists four dates, the first being “092511”. This date is not even formatted, nor is it found in the <entry> component below. Even though it’s listed in the <text> component, the computer only understands the <entry> component. The same goes for the Problem <code> and <value>.
No data. But you would never know unless you looked inside. The Problem List in this CDA is data empty! It’s like a car with no gas. It looks pretty, but it will get you nowhere.