What is an API? (Application Programming Interface)

API is the acronym for Application Programming Interface, which is a software intermediary that allows two applications to talk to each other.  In Healthcare, APIs have been developed in support of systems interoperability, such as the case with FHIR.  FHIR (Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources) is a standard describing data formats and elements for exchanging health records.  Many of these resources are provided directly within Epic.  Another standard, REST, is an architectural style that defines a set of constraints to be used for creating a standards-based web service.  Duke has developed custom RESTful APIs to read EHR data from the Epic Clarity database, leveraging an interoperable model developed by the ONC known as the US Core Data Model for Interoperability (USCDI).

This catalog directs users to available documentation for understanding how to integrate available APIs into an application.  More information about how to request access for production endpoints can be found here.