Research Article| Volume 14, ISSUE 5, P313-321, October 1999

Coding data from child health records: The relationship between interrater agreement and interpretive burden

  • Elisabet M.H. Hagelin
    Address reprints requests to Elisabet M.H. Hagelin, RN, PhD, Central Child Health Unit, Entrance 92, Uppsala University Children's Hospital, S-751 85 Uppsala, Sweden.
    Department of Women's and Children's Health, Unit of Pediatrics, Uppsala University, Sweden
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      The relationship between interrater reliability and interpretive burden when coding information from Swedish Child Health records was studied. Information on preschool children's living conditions, health, and different aspects of care was sorted into one of four groups according to degree of interpretive burden. Two interrater assessments were conducted and compared. The results showed that a low degree of interpretive burden correlated to high interrater agreement. It was possible to increase concordance by coder training, clarifying definitions of variables, and coding instructions, but not so as to eliminate totally the general differences between groups of variables that differed regarding interpretive burden.
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