When detail does count
As we have mentioned several times in IOMED, up to 85% of the total clinical information is in text format, which blocks its use for analysis and research. This would not happen if the data were structured. To solve this problem, we can apply several types of solutions:
Manually structuring the data, which implies a great labor load, with the consequent economic and time cost.
Automate the search a bit, looking for explicit mentions of diseases and symptoms.
Go a little further, taking into account:
- The relationship between the terms. Example: A finding (pain) related to an anatomical site (abdomen)
- The different meanings of words. For example, a twin can be an anatomical site or refer to the patient’s brother.
- Denial. For example: clearly, it is not the same to say that a patient suffers from stress, as to say that he or she does not suffer from stress.
This is all very useful but sometimes you need to get a little more detail:
- For example, if predictors of readmission were needed, surely the social and family context would be helpful.
- If we wanted to quantify populations at risk of certain diseases, we would likely need to inquire into the lifestyle: smokers, former smokers, or sedentary lifestyles.
- Family history is crucial as a history of some diagnoses.
Is it possible in these cases to obtain the necessary information? The answer is yes: the factors that can affect a person clinically, obtained within the context of the examination, can be structured using a specific ontology for this, called SNOMED.
However, in the case of excessively sensitive information, although these data can be extracted, access to them would take many authorizations and bureaucratic processes. This makes sense when it comes to patient-level information, but if the need is to get an aggregated number, the answer is Compass.
Compass is IOMED’s new interface to access real-world data added instantly, including the details and observations we mentioned above.
What is Compass?
If you want to know more about what Compass is, don’t hesitate to contact us. Write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org