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InterSystems HL7 Interface Specialist Recertification Project

InterSystems IRIS for Health, HealthShare Health Connect, HL7, Interoperability, Integration Engine, DTL, Routing Rules, Troubleshooting HL7 interfaces

The InterSystems HL7® Interface Specialist recertification project is designed to provide candidates that already have the InterSystems HL7 Interface Specialist certification a 2nd option to get recertified (the other option is to take the new version of the exam). Candidates are only eligible to complete the recertification project if the expiration date of their certification is within 6 months of today’s date. Please see the InterSystems Recertification Policy for more information.

Project Details

The InterSystems HL7 Interface Specialist recertification project contains a set of hands-on exercises to validate core skills for developers who use InterSystems products to build and test HL7 v2.x productions. The project is open-book, open-internet, etc. The only resource that is not allowed is consulting with another human.

Project Title: InterSystems HL7 Interface Specialist Recertification Project

Candidate Description: An IT professional who:

  • designs, builds, and performs basic troubleshooting of HL7 interfaces with InterSystems products, and 
  • has at least six months full-time experience in the technology.

Note: This project does not require familiarity with ObjectScript

Recommended Preparation
Classroom course Building and Managing HL7 Integrations or equivalent experience. Online courses Configuring Validation of HL7 V2 Messages in ProductionsBuilding Basic HL7 V2 Integrations with InterSystems, and Using HL7 V2 Bracket and Parentheses Syntax To Identify Virtual Properties are recommended, as well as familiarity with InterSystems Documentation.

Project Contents
The project contains the following 5 sections.

  1. Profile update: Candidates are required to update their profile on InterSystems recertification project delivery platform.
  2. Learning exercise: Watch an online learning video hosted at and answer a set of questions based on the video.
  3. Module 1 hands-on exercise: Build an InterSystems HL7 production from a project specification document on an instance of InterSystems IRIS for Health.
    • Requires access to a virtual machine (VM) provided by InterSystems Certification.
  4. Module 2 hands-on exercise: Troubleshoot an InterSystems HL7 production on an instance of InterSystems IRIS for Health.
    • Requires access to a virtual machine (VM) provided by InterSystems Certification. 
  5. Optional advertisement/survey section.

Project time limit
The total time estimated to complete the project is four hours. However, six hours of VM time are allotted to complete Sections 3 and 4 of the project. Candidates are required to provide InterSystems Certification a one-week time frame in which they plan to complete the project.

Passing score: 68%

Language offered: English

Practical experience required

  • Only Certified InterSystems HL7 Interface Specialists with expiring credentials (expiration date is within 6 months of today's date) are eligible to complete the project.

Practice questions
The practice questions were written for the certification exam, but provide an accurate representation of the content covered in the project exercises.

Project format
The questions are presented in pull-down list, multiple choice, and multiple response formats.

Project topics 
Sections 3 and 4 of the project contains exercises that cover the areas for the stated role as shown in the KSA (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities) chart immediately below.



Designs HL7 productions


Interprets interface requirements 

  1. Determines productions and namespaces needed
  2. Determines appropriate production components and the flow of messages
  3. Determines production needs from interface specifications
  4. Determines data transformation needs
  5. Determines validation settings
  6. Designs routing rules


Chooses production architecture components

  1. Identifies basic functionality of production components
  2. Identifies adapters used by built-in HL7 components
  3. Identifies the components in a production diagram
  4. Names production components, rules, and DTLs according to conventions


Designs custom schemas

  1. Identifies custom segments in custom schema categories
  2. Determines where sample messages deviate from schema requirements


Builds HL7 productions


Adds production components to build interfaces 

  1. Adds production components to productions
  2. Imports and exports productions and their components using the deploy tool


Creates and applies routing rules

  1. Creates and interprets rule sets
  2. Accesses HL7 message contents using expression editor
  3. Identifies how constraints affect code completion in the expression editor
  4. Uses virtual property path syntax to implement rule conditions
  5. Uses virtual property syntax and utility functions to retrieve HL7 data
  6. Applies foreach actions
  7. Determines problems within routing rules


Applies key configuration settings in productions 

  1. Identifies key configuration settings in business services and operations
  2.  Maps key settings to correct components
  3.  Configures pool size and actor pool size settings to ensure FIFO
  4.  Configures alert configuration settings
  5.  Configures failure timeout setting to ensure FIFO
  6. Configures and uses credentials
  7. Identifies behavior caused by using system default settings


Uses DTL Editor to build DTLs

  1. Configures source and target message classes
  2. Adds functions to DTL expressions
  3. Differentiates between Create New versus Create Copy settings
  4. Applies foreach actions
  5. Applies if actions
  6. Applies group actions
  7. Applies switch actions
  8. Tests DTLs 


Creates custom schemas 

  1. Determines custom schema requirements
  2. Creates new custom schemas based on requirements
  3. Identifies segment characteristics from message structure


Applies ACK/NACK functionality 

  1. Selects appropriate ACK mode settings
  2. Identifies default ACK/NACK settings for business service
  3. Determines reply code actions for desired behaviors


Manages messages

  1. Purges messages manually
  2. Purges messages automatically
  3. Ensures purge tasks are running 


Troubleshoots HL7 productions


Identifies and uses tools for troubleshooting

  1. Uses production configuration page
  2. Configures Archive I/O setting
  3. Identifies the name of the central alert component
  4. Uses bad message handler
  5. Uses Jobs page, Messages page, Production Monitor page, and Queues page
  6. Identifies root cause of production problem states
  7. Tests message routing rules using testing tool


Uses Visual Trace

  1. Locates session ID of a message 
  2. Interprets information displayed in Visual Trace
  3. Interprets different icons in the Visual Trace
  4. Locates information in tabs of Visual Trace
  5. Determines causes of alerts 
  6. Troubleshoots production configuration problems


Uses Message Viewer

  1. Optimizes search options
  2. Searches messages using Basic Criteria
  3. Searches messages using Extended Criteria
  4. Uses search tables in productions
  5. Resends Messages
  6. Troubleshoots display problems in Message Viewer


Uses logs for debugging

  1. Uses Business Rule Log
  2. Uses the Event Log to examine log entries
  3. Identifies auditable events
  4. Searches the Event Log