Who should use the DIL?

Gateway Developers

The DIL has been designed and fielded in an effort to support test driven development. Its primary focus is on pushing to developers the tools necessary to test software development and ensure quality- infused systems are delivered. In response to agile methodologies and the need to rapidly develop and deploy high quality products, the DIL seeks to develop, in concert with requirements, a set of system test cases which validate that the software being delivered meets or exceeds the system’s requirements. This testing approach requires the delivery of test cases prior to developers completing their development sprint. Agile teams are being designed to integrate testers directly into the agile process ensuring that developers and testers work in concert. Unlike current testing practices, which depend on manual testing and developers claiming their code is correct and throwing it ‘over the wall’ (often categorized in the industry as a lack of quality), these tightly coupled agile processes seek to guarantee systems “fail forward” or “fail fast”.

Gateway Testing Benefits

The DIL provides a comprehensive suite of existing interoperability and integrated testing environments so developers can leverage complex message-based technology stacks ensuring continuous operational support is maintained. Testing gateway-to-gateway is an essential element in assuring that organizations maintain interoperability at all times. Interoperability testing is not limited to systems level changes at a particular organization. Rather, interoperability needs to be tested whenever system-level changes are being made to the larger operational community, including external organizations dependent upon interoperability and inter-dependencies with organizations across town or across the nation.

Interoperability Report Card

The DIL supports dashboard reporting, which allows project and program leads to request summary updates on the level of testing undertaken and the status of testing-to-date against project milestones. Communities of interest established by participants can use the dashboard to evaluate community member capabilities against provided service sets to determine readiness or ability to comply with an organization’s testing requirements. This approach to leverage the DIL’s reporting capabilities mitigates significant risk associated with self-attestation and organizations incorrectly reporting their capabilities. To mitigate this risk, the DIL ensures that both reporting summary and inspection tools are available.

Value to Certifying Bodies Reviewing Test Results

The DIL currently provides several role-based interfaces. One such documented role is the validator. Organizations can contract with the DIL to provide validation services and workflows. A participant completes a set of tests and submits to a validation body. The DIL will, depending on the service set, prompt the participant to choose which validation body they wish to submit their results to for further test verification and any approved certification process.

Product and Adapter Testing Platform

The DIL maintains an integrated ecosystem, which supports platform based testing. This approach, when leveraged by health IT vendors, allows for integrated community based testing across a multitude of gateways and organizations. As testing requirements transform into larger health systems-based testing, which is necessary with Meaningful Use Stage 2 and beyond, interoperability and outcomes analysis become the focal point of determining meaningful use criteria and Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs). Effectively using their outcomes to better provide for future treatments, the DIL provides a testing platform to support this series of testing capabilities.

Operations Teams and Stress/Load Testing

Beyond performance engineering and testing during the development cycle, the DIL has and maintains extended value options. One of those options is to subject pre-production gateways to a focused set of load and stress testing exercises. Participant organizations are able to contract with the DIL to leverage these capabilities. Organizations typically want to test for load and stress on pre-production environments to ensure they know the maximum scalability and transaction volume supported by their system as input to their operations center standard operating procedures. This affords organizations an opportunity to tune the entire tech stack of their pre-production system prior to going live or in response to a production performance issue related to scalability. A properly administered load and stress test will provide a comprehensive review of hardware and network sizing to ensure an organization continuous operation in accordance with their Service Level Agreement (SLA). As stated above, The DIL currently supports testing of more than 10,000 messages per minute, running over 3 100MB pipes.

Onboarding and the DIL

The DIL provides for hosting complex suites of service sets, scenarios, test cases, and validation rules in a dynamic template driven environment. This, combined with the multi-role capability around communities, representatives, and validation bodies, allows the DIL to serve as a comprehensive testing platform for message-based exchanges to host and manage their onboarding processes. The DIL, while currently providing extensive testing capabilities to the Health Information Exchange and health information technology arena, supports ANY message-based test exchange, such as justice, intelligence, financial, and surveillance industries, to name a few. As the exchange of electronic information and networks of systems expand, our need to ensure interoperability testing approaches, such as those provided by the DIL, will become a critical infrastructure to ongoing software development on a global level.