Computing disease incidence, prevalence and comorbidity from electronic medical records

J Biomed Inform. 2016 Oct;63:108-111. doi: 10.1016/j.jbi.2016.08.005. Epub 2016 Aug 4.


Electronic medical records (EMR) represent a convenient source of coded medical data, but disease patterns found in EMRs may be biased when compared to surveys based on sampling. In this communication we draw attention to complications that arise when using EMR data to calculate disease prevalence, incidence, age of onset, and disease comorbidity. We review known solutions to these problems and identify challenges for future work.

Keywords: Bias; Comorbidity; Electronic medical records; Incidence; Prevalence.

MeSH terms

  • Communication
  • Comorbidity
  • Electronic Health Records*
  • Epidemiology*
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Prevalence