Examining ICD-10 coding for family violence within a New Zealand District Health Board
Family violence is a significant public health problem affecting women internationally and in New Zealand. Health surveillance is needed to inform an effective health care system response and monitor change over time. The International Classification of Diseases, 10th revision (ICD-10) coding system is an accessible data source of hospital discharge information. The purpose of the current research was to examine the use of family violence ICD-10 coding in one District Health Board. An electronic report of discharges for all women aged 15 to 74 years in whom a family violence ICD-10 discharge code was designated over a three year period will be compiled. Of the admissions in the study three year period, a family violence code, representing less than 1% was found. This research will highlight the importance of family violence assessment, documentation and coding within the health system. Health system family violence surveillance can be used to examine the association between family violence and health, as well as to monitor changes over time. Future research should assess tactics for recognizing and overcoming impediments to identification and coding of family violence.