Having relevant, up-to-date information about a patient’s health care history is often crucial for providing the appropriate treatment. In Denmark, IT systems have been built to support different work flows in the health sector, but the systems are rarely connected and have become islands of data. To remedy this situation, a service-oriented architecture based on web services for online exchange of health care data between the vast array of heterogeneous IT systems in the sector is being built. The architecture forms a federation of web services and enables secure and reliable authentication of end-users and systems in the Danish health sector. The architecture is based on national and international standards and specifications. Yet it defines its own profile for secure interchange of data due to a lack of available international profiles that could handle the special needs of the health sector at the time of project inception. The architecture has evolved through a pilot project from mid 2005 to the end of 2007, and is being tested in a small scale 1 st quarter 2008. This paper aims to convey experiences from the project, so rich in benefits that the architecture has been accepted and standardized as the foundation for the future of system integration in the health sector in Denmark
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