Case-based interpretation of best medical coding practices - Application to data collection for cancer registries. In The 25th International Conference on Case-Based Reasoning (ICCBR 2017) Workshop Proceedings,Trondheim, Norway, 26-28 June 2017. (Book Chapter)
- Public Health Expertise
Currently, cancer remains one of the main causes of death. To assist in the fight against this disease, cancer registries are being used. A cancer registry is a systematic, continuous, exhaustive and non redundant collection of data about cancers diagnosed and/or treated in a country or region. The collected data is defined in international standards with common terminologies (e.g., the International Classification of Diseases, commonly abbreviated as ICD ) and associated to best medical coding practices. Unfortunately, these practices and standards are very complex, making it difficult for operators, i.e. medical sta↵ in charge of collecting and coding the data, and coding experts to apply them efficiently and consistently.
The aim of this research is to tackle this complexity, by assisting both operators and coding experts in the interpretation of best medical coding practices.
For the Luxembourg National Cancer Registry (NCR), a ticketing system has been implemented for operators. When they encounter a difficult coding problem, they can ask questions through this system and coding experts provide individual answers. Interesting questions are later presented and discussed in regular training sessions for operators. Coding experts rely on their medical knowledge and their understanding of the coding standards and best medical coding practices to answer the questions. However, it is crucial for cancer registries to have a consistent coding of the data, meaning that two similar patients should be coded similarly. Thus, two similar coding questions should have similar answers. For that reason, the coding experts must also take into account previous questions to answer new questions.
Section 2 presents the research plan, followed by a review of the current progress in section 3. Finally, section 4 outlines the remaining work.