We’re pleased to announce that the Health Library and Information Services Directory (HLISD) now has an open API. An Application Programming Interface (API) means that the data available in HLISD is now available in a machine readable format and can be reused in other applications.
Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) are the secret sauce of the open web, empowering developers to reuse data right from the source and ensuring information is maintainable and reusable for a better web experience for all.
This helps reduce duplication and ensures that the information about health libraries and services is accurate and up-to-date.
We’ve been working with the CILIP Health Libraries Group and Health Education England since the relaunch of the directory in 2019. Last year, the HLISD board approached us about developing an API for the platform as part of their growing commitment to open data standards and to help encourage better interoperability between platforms in the sector.
The development of the API was just one of the latest features developed in partnership with the management committee and in collaboration with users of the platform.
The directory includes listings for nearly 650 library and information services and is regularly updated and maintained as the quintessential listings for health libraries in the UK.
The API has now completed an alpha initial testing phase with HLISD partners and the beta release is now available to all developers.
It was import to us that the API was usable and followed best practices including:
- RESTful JSON with clear and readable data fields
- compliance with GDS technical and data standards for APIs
- clear and user-friendly documentation and support
- a simple registration process
- collaborative by design
We look forward to continuing to work with the management team and project partners to further develop the API and the open standards of the HLISD project.