Posted on behalf of Tom Bishop, Software Developer
Having a game plan is essential before installing and configuring Summit Exchange.
Here are some things to consider:
1. What are your interfacing needs?
An interface is defined as “a point where two systems, subjects, organizations, etc., meet and interact.”
Identify the number of interfaces.
Start with the systems to receive messages from and the systems to send messages to. Receiving messages from System A and sending them to System B is a simple interface. If a message needs to be modified before sending to System B, don’t worry Summit has an integrated mapping tool to help modify the message.
Identify the type of each interface.
Summit Exchange has the following types of receiving components:

  • Direct             
  • FTP                
  • MSMQ           
  • Web Service
  • File                 
  • HTTP             
  • TCP/IP

Summit Exchange has the following types of sending components:

  • Direct             
  • File                 
  • Imprivata                    
  • TCP/IP
  • Email              
  • FTP                
  • MSMQ                       
  • Tiger Text
  • FHIR Alert      
  • HTTP             
  • SQL Server                
  • Web Service                                                                       

Identify the message type for each.
Summit Exchange supports the following message formats:

  • Binary             
  • FHIR XML      
  • HL7                
  • HL7 V3                       
  • JSON             
  • Multiple Part
  • PDF                
  • Plain Text       
  • SOAP             
  • Trigger            
  • XML               
  • Zip

With the information collected, then determine the components that will be needed for each interface.
2. Distributed or single server installation?
The software configuration will affect performance. A distributed installation will perform better than a single server installation. The number of messages processed per day will help make this decision. Summit Exchange can easily be reconfigured as new hardware is added.
3. How much storage is needed?
To estimate the storage needed, get an approximate message size and the number of messages processed per day from each interface. Then decide how long the messages will be stored.
4. Security?
Security is controlled with groups. Create groups with the desired permissions and then add users. Users can belong to multiple groups. Summit Exchange supports local and Active Directory users and groups. Import an Active Directory group and all group members will have access. When a new user is added to the AD group, they will automatically have access. When a user is removed, they will no longer have access.
5. Licensing?
Once the receivers, senders and processing components have been identified, then the appropriate licensing can be purchased.
Summit Exchange is a powerful, proven and cost-effective interoperability platform used by more than 200 healthcare organizations to establish seamless data exchange, addressing a wide range of technology and information integration and automation challenges from the simple to the extremely complex. Exchange delivers standards-based interface support, allowing Hospitals, Health Systems, ACOs, Practices, Clinics and Vendors to successfully connect disparate systems, gather and normalize data and streamline connectivity, communication, and data exchange. Connecting systems and accurately integrating data is essential to delivering on quality and patient safety expectations. Therefore, whether your organization is looking to integrate with ancillary vendors, vendor monitors, physician practices, another Hospital, or an HIE, Summit Exchange combines support for all of the latest interoperability standards with a deep history of supporting the widest range of existing systems.
For more information on Summit’s products and Summit Exchange, please visit our website at