Clinical coding and classifications, sometimes called health classifications, group aspects of patient information and characteristics into categories based on established criteria, logic and conventions. These categories can then be used for a range of activities that underpin the delivery of health services. These activities include:
- health service planning
- patient quality and safety monitoring
- development and ongoing maintenance/execution of funding models
- research and epidemiology.
Clinical coding and classifications are used in the following service categories:
- admitted care
- subacute and non-acute care
- non-admitted care
- mental healthcare
- emergency care.
The Independent Hospital Pricing Authority (IHPA) undertakes reviews and updates of existing classifications and is also responsible for introducing new classifications for those service categories without an existing classification.