Curating routinely collected hearing-health data to facilitate the equitable re-use of NHS data for translational research using the OMOP framework

Authors: George Tilston1, Antje Heinrich1

1University of Manchester

Background: The National Institute of Health and Social Care Research (NIHR) Health Informatics Collaborative (HIC) for Hearing Health is a collaboration between NHS trusts and their partner universities, hosted by Biomedical Research Centres (BRCs). Its aim is to curate routinely collected hearing health data to facilitate the equitable re-use of NHS data for translational research. Combining data of this scale across various health domains presents unique challenges. Each contributing NHS trust possesses its own bespoke data management system, and data integration across trusts is not straight-forward. Here we describe how we approached this challenge using the OMOP framework.

Methods: The Observational Medical Outcomes Partnership (OMOP) enables the transformation of patient data into a standardised, research-ready database. OMOP is an international common data model that enables the capture of medical information (e.g. encounters, patients, providers, diagnoses) in the same way across different institutions. Although some pure tone audiometry-related concepts existed in other clinical vocabularies, no architecture existed that inter-relates these codes. We developed new classifications and a corresponding inter-relational architecture. Here we describe the development process using the example of audiograms because they are routinely collected and often stored in a variety of ways across multiple hospitals.

Results: We will describe how audiometric tests were mapped to OMOP, using Procedure Occurrence for the test, and Observation for specific conditions. These tables are linked using the Fact Relationship table.

Conclusion: The NIHR HIC for Hearing Health has developed a pipeline which allows hospitals to standardise patient audiogram data, making it easier to combine these data in a research database. The next step involves HIC sites uploading standardised audiogram data to a dedicated hearing health database, which researchers can use for translational research.