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An information model that provides a common representation of particular types of information.

Notes

  • The objective of a model of a meaning is to enable similar types of information collected, stored or communicated in different ways to be integrated for analysis and reuse to support a range of uses. 
  • A model of a meaning requires structural and terminological components that contribute to meaning to be resolved into a common form that minimizes the risk of ambiguity and misinterpretation. Thus a model of meaning can also be thought of as a set of rules for transforming different representations of the same information into one or more forms suitable for analysis and reuse.
  • In contrast, a model of use refers to a representation of information that meets the requirements of a limited set of use cases.

Examples

  • Family history information be recorded in different ways depending on when and how the data was collected. Three of the many possible methods of collection are shown below.
Method of CollectionPossible Model of Use Record
Checkbox in a questionnaire"Yes" recorded against the label "Family history of heart disease"
Coded entry in a family history record section

Family history record entry containing: 56265001 |Heart disease|

Coded entry from a picklist or search

Clinical record entry containing: 275120007 |Family history: Cardiac disorder|

  • A decision support rule may need to show an alert in patients with a family history of heart disease. An effective model of meaning needs to ensure the required information is accessible to the rules engine irrespective of the way it was originally recorded.  The table below shows one way to resolve each of three model of use records into a common form to support effective retrieval.
Model of Use RecordPossible Model of Meaning Resolutions
"Yes" recorded against the label "Family history of heart disease"

Map "Yes" response to questionnaire entry to 275120007 |Family history: Cardiac disorder|

Family history record entry containing: 56265001 |Heart disease|

Map use of disorder concepts in family history section to the appropriate family history concept 275120007 |Family history: Cardiac disorder|

Clinical record entry containing: 275120007 |Family history: Cardiac disorder|

No change

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