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A comparison between the VIPS model and the ICF for expressing nursing content in the health care record


Florin, Jan; Ehrenberg, Anna; Ehnfors, Margareta; Björvell, Catrin


k. A.


International Journal of Medical Informatics, 2013, Volume 82 (Number 2), Seite 108-117, Shannon, County Clare: Elsevier Irland, ISSN: 1386-5056 (Print); 1872-8243 (Online)





This study investigated the content validity of the ICF from a nursing perspective. The ICF covers a most of the nursing content in the VIPS model and often with a sufficient level of details. Core nursing terms and nursing perspectives are missing in the ICF. The ICF terms can largely be mapped to the key words for patient status in the VIPS model.


Multi-professional standardized terminologies are needed that cover common as well as profession-specific care content in order to obtain a full coverage and description of the contributions from different health professionals' perspectives in health care. Implementation of terminologies in clinical practice that do not cover professionals' needs for communication might jeopardize the quality of care.


The aim of the study was to compare the structure and content of the Swedish VIPS model for nursing documentation and the international classification of function, disability and health (ICF).


Mapping was performed between key words and prototypical examples for patient status in the VIPS model and terms in the ICF and its framework of domains, chapters and specific terms. The study had two phases. In the first phase 13 key words for patient status in the VIPS model and the 289 terms (prototypical examples) describing related content were mapped to comparable terms in the ICF. In phase two, 1424 terms on levels 2-4 in the ICF were mapped to the key words for patient status in the VIPS model.


Differences in classification structures and content were found, with a more elaborated level of detail displayed in the ICF than in the VIPS model. A majority of terms could be mapped, but several essential nursing care concepts and perspectives identified in the VIPS model were missing in the ICF. Two-thirds of the content in the ICF could be mapped to the VIPS' key words for patient status; however, the remaining terms in the ICF, describing body structure and environmental factors, are not part of the VIPS model.


Despite that a majority of the nursing content in the VIPS model could be expressed by terms in the ICF, the ICF needs to be developed and expanded to be functional for nursing practice. The results have international relevance for global efforts to implement unifying multi-professional terminologies. In addition, our results underline the need for sufficient coverage and level of detail to support different professional perspectives in health care terminologies.

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Informationen in der ICF:


Zeitschriftenbeitrag / Forschungsergebnis


International Journal of Medical Informatics

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Informationsstand: 04.11.2013

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