Identifier to contained resource
The use of a contained FHIR resource should be the last option considered.
For resources like
Patient this could introduce duplication within the complete FHIR payload.
[Resource].text elements should not be populated when using contained resources. When resources are contained inside another resource then all text should be represented in the
[Resource].text element, including data from the contained resources. This would make the
[Resource].text element a concatination of many strings, likely unreadable and confusing.
<MedicationRequest xmlns="http://hl7.org/fhir"> <contained> <Patient> <id value="patient-2245386903"/> <!-- patient details for Joe Bloggs --> </Patient> </contained> <contained> <Medication> <id value="medication-87652004"/> <!-- medication details for Atenolol --> </Medication> </contained> <subject> <reference value="#patient-2245386903"/> <display value="Joe Bloggs"/> </subject> <medicationReference> <reference value="#medication-87652004"/> <display value="Atenolol"/> </medicationReference> <!-- other elements of the MedicationRequest resource --> </MedicationRequest>
This method of referencing other FHIR Resources still allows for a truly RESTful implementation with end-points handling individual Resources. For example;
Note: Off-the-shelf FHIR validators will not be able to validate the content of the Contained Resources so will need to be customised.