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Invited Commentary
October 2018

Clinical Concepts, Coding, and How It Relates to Big Data

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Ophthalmology and Vision Sciences, University of California, Davis, Sacramento
  • 2Ocular Inflammatory Disease Center, UCLA Stein Eye Institute, Los Angeles
  • 3Department of Ophthalmology, David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California Los Angeles, Los Angeles
JAMA Ophthalmol. 2018;136(10):1191-1192. doi:10.1001/jamaophthalmol.2018.2998

The federal government’s vision for a national interoperable health care system is to promote safe, high-quality, cost-effective care and to allow researchers to rapidly learn, develop, and deliver cutting-edge treatments.1 As noted by Palestine and coauthors2 in this issue of JAMA Ophthalmology, the ability to analyze large data sets across multiple electronic health record (EHR) systems offers the opportunity to answer important clinical questions, especially for uncommon diseases such as uveitis. To achieve this goal, standardization of clinical terms must exist, yet the authors’ investigation found a striking variability in the selection of codes from the International Statistical Classification of Diseases, Tenth Revision, Clinical Modification (ICD-10-CM) between 2 different EHR systems.