Toward harmonising WHO International Classifications: A nursing perspective

Tae Youn Kim, Amy Coenen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The WHO Family of International Classifications (FIC) provides a suite of health classifications to promote data exchange and comparisons worldwide. The International Classification of Functioning, Disabilities and Health (ICF) and the International Classification for Nursing Practice (ICNP) are part of WHO-FIC. This study was designed to examine to what extent the ICF and ICNP could be mapped to facilitate unambiguous communication across health settings and professionals. A total of 946 concepts from ICF were mapped to ICNP primitive concepts. Lexical matches generated by machine were examined to find false positive or additional semantic equivalence. Although the semantic mapping increased the number of exact and partial matches by 13%, only less than half of ICF concepts (46%) were able to be mapped to ICNP concepts. ICF concepts were more granular than ICNP concepts in the area of human functioning and body structures. Major challenges in mapping the two classifications resulted from differences in the terminology structure, concept representation and content specificity. A reference terminology model was useful to the mapping effort. The study findings support ongoing advancement in the area of harmonisation of healthcare terminologies. Applications that blend the use of ICF and ICNP concepts in practice should be further tested.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)35-49
Number of pages15
JournalInformatics for Health and Social Care
Volume36
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2011
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Nursing
Terminology
Semantics
International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health
Health Communication
Human Body
Standardized Nursing Terminology
Delivery of Health Care
Health

Keywords

  • health informatics
  • healthcare terminology
  • International Classification
  • terminology mapping

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Informatics
  • Health Information Management
  • Nursing (miscellaneous)
  • Medicine(all)

Cite this

Toward harmonising WHO International Classifications : A nursing perspective. / Kim, Tae Youn; Coenen, Amy.

In: Informatics for Health and Social Care, Vol. 36, No. 1, 01.2011, p. 35-49.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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