words of WISDAM from the Electronic Encyclopaedia of Personal Data (EEPD)

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7 September, 2010 (20:57) | Data quality, EPR, Nightmares!, Paper Records | By: rupertfawdry

see EEPD Vol. 2 Nightmare Findings.

The bottom line:

Although more data is regularly collected from a greater proportion of humanity in the antenatal booking process than any other data collecting activity anywhere at any time in the whole world, there are no universally agreed logical criteria for deciding what we should or should not be recording.

Things have hardly moved on since 1979 , when I first started analysing all the data items I found in paper records.

In 1984 I analysed the items considered worthy of inclusion in the printed case-notes used for the initial assessment (”booking“) history in the 41 teaching hospitals in the United Kingdom

571 different items were recorded; although the average number per hospital was 80 (Range 12 – 150).

Only 12 out of the 571 data items were universal!  Only 29 out of 571 data items were found to be present in more than 75% of case records and only 52 were present in more than 50% of records

Numerous items were only found in 1-5 records

The final result of this analysis of paper records has been the theoretical concept of “The Nightmare Document”. The aim of this would have been to list in a logical sequence all those data items which someone somewhere has reasonably concluded to be so important that they merited being printed in at least one printed paper maternity or neonatal record.

In the event, the complexity has proved so great that the task has not been (and probably never will be) completed.


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