We are talking about HL7 FHIR Resources.
Person resource serves as a linkage resource that may provide a reference set of common demographics for an individual (human or animal) across multiple roles.
This linkage can be direct to role-specific FHIR resources (
RelatedPerson) residing on the same or possibly distinct FHIR systems/applications, or indirectly through the use of business identifiers.
The following is the structure of the Person resource
Person.link highlighted above, contains the target which is the resource to which an actual person is associated.
Unless the patient is not a person.
We must not forget that a patient could be an non-person or what Veterinary Medicine covers.
Veterinary care is very much within the scope of FHIR, and the Patient resource can be used to communicate information about animal patients.
To support this, there is a standard patient-animal extension which can be used for recording details about species, breed, and gender status. This extension is not intended to cover all relevant properties for veterinary care, and the use of additional domain-relevant extensions is expected for areas such as laboratory, zoological and livestock care.
Th url for this extension is
The absence of the animal extension does not imply that the patient is a human. If a system requires such a positive assertion that the patient is human, an extension will be required
The following is the structure of the animal extension resource.
You are probably asking where is this leading to…
It’s about using Extensions for the Patient Resource. We could add an nested extension to describe who or what the animal belongs to. I am referring to ownership. The key takeaway is to use an extension to provide just enough information to provide a way to identify the non-person.
Anyone want to take a stab at non-mammals?