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Mirth Connect Extensions: What You Need to Know

Prerequisistes

  • Basic Knowledge of Mirth Connect

Overview

Users can navigate to Mirth Connect’s Extensions screen by selecting Extensions on the left-hand side.

You should now see the following screen:

The extensions page is composed of two panels: Installed Connectors and Installed Plugins. The only difference between the two is that the first panel relates to Source and Destination connectors that are available for channels while the second panel relates to software plugins that are not Source or Destination Connectors.

When you select a row on either of the panels, you will see the following options on the left-hand side under Extension Tasks.

Here you will see the following options:

  • Refresh
  • Disable Extension
  • Show Properties
  • Uninstall Extension

The Refresh button refreshes the entries in both the Installed Connectors and Installed Plugins panels.

Disable Extension allows you to disable the functionality of a presently installed extension.

Show Properties brings up a dialog with more information about that connector or plugin (See below).

This particular dialog is for the Mirth Connet File Writer Connector for version 3.7.

Lastly, you can select Uninstall Extension. Unlike Disable Extension, this will remove the extension from your Mirth Connect instance as the name implies.

On the very bottom part of the Extensions screen, you will notice there is an option to browse for a file.

Integration Developers write Java components that can be uploaded into Mirth Connect Administrator so that they can be used in the Mirth instance. Developers will use an IDE (Integrated Development Environment) like Eclipse to accomplish this.

For example, say that you need a different data type that could be used over and over again in your Mirth instance. A developer could create this custom Java Object in Eclipse, publish it, and then upload it via the Extensions screen.

List of Free Connectors and Plugins

The below connectors and plugins come installed by default with the free version of Mirth Connect. In fact, you will just recognize the below extensions as just part of the engine, and most of the names are self-explanatory.

Installed Connectors

  • SMTP Sender
  • File Writer
  • HTTP Sender
  • File Reader
  • HTTP Listener
  • DICOM Listener
  • JavaScript Reader
  • Channel Writer
  • Database Reader
  • TCP Listener
  • Database Writer
  • Document Writer
  • Web Service Listener
  • JavaScript Writer
  • TCP Sender
  • Channel Reader
  • Web Service Sender
  • JMS Sender
  • JMS Listener
  • DICOM Sender

Installed Plugins

  • Server Log
  • Text Viewer
  • Delimited Data Type
  • XML Data Type
  • HTTP Authentication Settings
  • Image Viewer
  • HL7v2 Data Type
  • Data Pruner
  • Raw Data Type
  • DICOM Data Type
  • Destination Set Filter Step
  • HL7v3 Data Type
  • JavaScript Filter Rule
  • Mapper Transformation Step
  • JavaScript Transformer Step
  • Message Builder Transformer Step
  • Dashboard Connector Status Monitor
  • DICOM Viewer
  • Directory Resource Plugin
  • External Script Transformation Step
  • External Script Filter Step
  • NCPDP Data Type
  • Rule Builder Filter Rule
  • Transmission Mode – MLLP
  • TCP Connector Service Plugin
  • JSON Data Type
  • PDF Viewer
  • EDI Data Type
  • Global Map Viewer
  • XSLT Transformation Step

Examples of Paid Extensions

Note: There are many different paid Mirth extensions that you can install. These are just a few examples:

  • XDS.b Listener
  • Role Based Access Control
  • SSL Manager
  • Channel and Revision History
  • Advanced Alerting
  • FHIR Listener / Sender

XDS.b Listener

XDS.b is a standard profile of SOAP transactions that were created by the IHE for the purposes of document retrieval and related functions. The XDS.b Listener makes receiving ITI-41 (Provide and Register), ITI-18 (Registry Stored Query), and ITI-43 (Retrieve Document Set).

The listener makes working with the transactions easier because it converts the request to JSON, and JSON is easier to work with. However, in actuality, the transaction is a SOAP request.

Since this type of integration is less frequently needed than HL7v2, it requires payment in order to access the connector.

Role Based Access Control

This feature allows the Systems Administrator to give users different levels of access based on their role. In the open-source version of Mirth Connect, all users are equal in terms of their access.

SSL Manager

The Mirth Connect SSL Manager is by far the most popular paid plugin, and this makes sense in light of HIPAA and other recent legislation in the United States. SSL Manager makes the configuration encryption extremely straightforward for any user with its certificate management and additional channel enhancements. It’s essential that Integration Engineers have a strong grasp on the security of patient data when working in production systems.

Channel Revision/History

This is a handy plugin specifically for Mirth Developers. Channel Revision triggers Mirth Connect to save the state of the channel each time the user saves a change on the channel. Since each revision is saved, developers can revert back to previous versions with the click of a button. This is convenient if you make a change in the code that introduces a bug, deploy it, and need to revert.

Advanced Alerting

Production Mirth Connect channels are a critical part of a healthcare organization’s information systems architecture, and many companies need top-notch alerting when things look out of sort. The Advanced Alerting plugin allows stakeholders to keep a closer eye on their most important channels.

FHIR Listener/Sender

In the last several years, the HL7 FHIR standard has been more widely adopted by various Healthcare systems. Mirth’s FHIR connectors allow you to easily accept and send FHIR data from and to applications with easy drag and drop builder interfaces for the resources that are most pertinent to your needs.


If you are interested in learning more about paid extensions from NextGen click here.

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