Standardizing laboratory data by mapping to LOINC.

The authors describe a pilot project to standardize local laboratory data at five Indian Health Service (IHS) medical facilities by mapping laboratory test names to Logical Observation Identifier Names and Codes (LOINC). An automated mapping tool was developed to assign LOINC codes. At these sites, they were able to map from 63% to 76% of the local active laboratory tests to LOINC using the mapping tool. Eleven percent to 27% of the tests were mapped manually. They could not assign LOINC codes to 6% to 19% of the laboratory tests due to incomplete or incorrect information about these tests. The results achieved approximate other similar efforts. Mapping of laboratory test names to LOINC codes will allow IHS to aggregate laboratory data more easily for disease surveillance and clinical and administrative reporting efforts. This project may provide a model for standardization efforts in other health systems.

Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association : JAMIA. 2006 May-Jun;13(3):353-5.

ISSN 1067-5027

Authors: Agha N Khan, Stanley P Griffith, Catherine Moore, Dorothy Russell, Arnulfo C Rosario, Jeanne Bertolli

PMID 16501183, PMC1513656

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