The purpose of the system here described is to expedite the filing, recall, and study of electrocardiograms by the use of punch cards and a code. The three basic components of the system are a combination request, interpretation, and billing form, a standard punch card, and a four-digit code. The code supplies a number to match every possible electrocardiographic diagnosis. Since each punch card has 80 columns, there is room for 17 boxes of four digits each, to represent as many as 17 different diagnoses, in addition to necessary identifying data. Experience with the processing of more than 14,000 electrocardiograms showed that this system greatly increases the speed and ease with which records of individual patients are recalled or large numbers of records are studied for research purposes.
Booth RW, Hull HB. COMPLETE SYSTEM FOR ELECTROCARDIOGRAM PROCESSING APPLICABLE TO MECHANICAL SORTING. JAMA. 1959;171(17):2295–2299. doi:https://doi.org/10.1001/jama.1959.03010350017004
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