Digital adaptation kits (DAKs) distill WHO guidelines for digital use by representing them as workflows, data dictionaries and decision support tables. This paper aims to highlight key lessons learnt in coding data elements of the antenatal care (ANC) and family planning DAKs to standardised classifications and terminologies (CATs).
We encoded data elements within the ANC and family planning DAKs to standardised CATs from the WHO CATs and other freely available CATs.
The coding process demonstrated approaches to refine the data dictionaries and enhance alignment between data elements and CATs.
Applying CATs to WHO clinical and public health guidelines can ensure that recommendations are operationalised in a digital system with appropriate consistency and clarity. This requires a multidisciplinary team and careful review to achieve conceptual equivalence between data elements and standardised terminologies.
The systematic translation of guidelines into digital systems provides an opportunity for leveraging CATs; however, this approach needs further exploration into its implementation in country contexts and transition into machine-readable components.