Patient Deduplication Architectures
Deduplicating patient records from multiple sources is a nuanced workflow. We've put this guide together to go over the basics of merging patient records, and review some of the most important technical design considerations when building a patient deduplication pipeline. The pipeline described here is the basis of an Enterprise Master Patient Index (EMPI).
We've organized the guide as follows:
- First, we review the high-level architecture of a patient deduplication pipeline
- Then we talk about ingesting records with either a batch or incremental pipeline
- Next, we discuss how to match duplicate records
- Finally, we go into some detail on the specific rules that you can use to perform deduplication by merging records
While it requires some planning up front, reconciling patient data from multiple sources can create a powerful data asset to power your clinical workflows. This guide may not be exhaustive, but it serves as a starting point for building a production ready deduplication workflow.
The merge techniques described here are general purpose, but can exist in two contexts (a) automatic merge, (b) manual merge or "human-in-the-loop." In both cases, audit reports are produced allowing visibility into why records were matched, why they were merged and who merged them.
You can also check out our blog post on the topic for more information.
- Patient deduplication reference implementation