Utilising Bioportal to map terms in the Canada Vigilance Adverse Reaction Online Database to various terminologies and to identify the ideal terminology to supplement MedDRA to aid in Pharmacovigilance activities.
The Canada Vigilance Program is Health Canada’s post marketing surveillance program that collects and analyzes data related to the adverse events of health products that are marketed in Canada. Health Canada periodically reviews these events and releases safety profile of drugs based on the reported events. The information collected by the Canada Vigilance Program is made available publicly through an online database. This project consists of two main objectives – 1) To map the adverse reaction terms and drug names in the online database to terminologies like SNOMED-CT, MeSH, UMLS and RxNORM and to identify the best approach to map the terms. 2) To identify the best terminology which can help in grouping previously unrelated fine grained MedDRA terms for use in the analysis of adverse events. The mappings were performed through the Bioportal web service of the National Centre for Biomedical Ontology(NCBO) and then were analysed to determine the accuracy and the coverage of the mappings. The MedDRA terminology that is used for adverse event reporting is a fine-grained terminology so this project focussed on identifying an ideal terminology to group together similar MedDRA terms that are not previously related through MedDRA hierarchy. This project is highly relevant to Health Informatics as it deals in entirety with healthcare terminologies like SNOMED-CT, UMLS, MeSH, MedDRA etc. which are the basis upon which health information is stored, shared, accessed and analysed. This project was an excellent opportunity to learn a new coding language like python and to learn on using REST-API for mapping terms .It also provided exposure in using large databases. At the end of this internship, the clinical terms were mapped to the identified terminologies and an ideal process to map the terms to various terminologies has been documented. Also, groupings of related MedDRA terms that were not related previously through the MedDRA hierarchy have been identified utilising SNOMED-CT and documented. The background of the objectives, methods followed and their results, as well as problems and recommended solutions are included in this report.