Using client-js in Node

The API for node is exactly the same as for the browsers, with the exception of how the SMART API object is created. In the browser, the SMART API is available in the global scope at window.FHIR.oauth2. In Node, the fhirclient module exports a function that you need to call to obtain the same SMART API object.

This will not work out of the box if your request object does not have a session object property that we can write to. This means that you may need use a middleware or plugin to provide that session support. See sessions.


This is very simple collection of three functions - authorize, ready and init. These are the exact same functions that we use in the browser. The only thing they do differently under the hood is how they store data in a session and how they handle redirects. Here is how this API object is created:

const smart = require("fhirclient");

// Inside a route handler
smart(request, response[, storage]) // -> { authorize, ready, init }


Call this in your launch_uri route handler to start the authorization flow:

const smart = require("fhirclient");

// inside your launch_uri route handler
smart(request, response).authorize({
    "client_id": "my_web_app",
    "scope"    : "launch patient/*.read openid fhirUser"


Call this in your redirect_uri route handler to complete the authorization flow and obtain a FhirClient instance:

const smart = require("fhirclient");

// inside your redirect_uri route handler
smart(request, response).ready(client => client.request("Patient"));


Alternatively, you can use init to handle everything in single route (only if your launch_uri is the same as your redirect_uri). This method is not available with HAPI!

const smart = require("fhirclient");

// inside your route handler
smart(request, response).init({
    "client_id": "my_web_app",
    "scope"    : "launch patient/*.read openid fhirUser"
}).then(client => client.request("Patient"));



If you use Express with express-session, or HAPI with hapi-server-session, or anything else that will ad a session object to your http request objects, then this library should work fine. Otherwise (or if you prefer some alternative storage), you will have to create custom session storage for storing the SMART state.

A valid storage object must implement the following interface:

get(key: string): Promise<any> // returns the value or undefined
set(key: string, value: any): Promise<any> // returns the value
unset(key: string): Promise<Boolean> // returns !!success

The default storage implementation is here.

Once you have your custom storage, you can just pass it as third argument to the function that creates the SMART API:

smart(request, response, myStorage).authorize(options)

Most of the time you would need to know more about the current request and response in order to create a storage instance. That is why passing a storage factory function is the recommended way:

function createStorage({ request, response }) {
    return new AwesomeCustomStorage(request, response);

// inside a route handler
smart(request, response, createStorage).authorize(options)

For working example of custom session storage see this example.


This library uses the concept of adapter to provide support for different environments like Browsers, NodeJS, Express and HAPI. More adapters can be added to support other frameworks or environments (Electron would be nice addition). PRs are welcome!

An adapter is a class that has a few methods for doing environment-specific things, including:

The adapters are located here. They all extend one abstract base class (BaseAdapter).

In Node require("fhirclient") loads the default adapter for Node and/or Express. To use another adapter load it like so:

// require("fhirclient/lib/entry/hapi") is the same as require("fhirclient/lib/adapters/HapiAdapter");
// but it is cleaner and comes with proper type definitions
const smart = require("fhirclient/lib/entry/hapi");

// inside your redirect_uri route handler
smart(request, h).ready(client => client.request("Patient"));

Note how in the above example the signature of the smart function has changed to smart(request, h) which makes more sense in HAPI. This is also defined by the adapter.

See the complete HAPI Example

Fhir.js Integration

If you want to use fhir.js along with this library, you will have to install it and then “connect” it using the dedicated connect method of the client:

const smart  = require("fhirclient");
const fhirJs = require("fhir.js");

// Inside a route handler
app.get("/", async (req, res) => {
    const client = await smart(req, res).ready();
    client.connect(fhirJs);{ type: "Patient" }).then(res.json).catch(res.json);

Complete example is available here