The World Health Organization has released the newest version of the International Classification of Diseases, ICD-11. The ICD tracks health trends and statistics globally. The nearly 55,000 unique codes identify injuries, diseases, symptoms, and causes of death. These codes are the common language that health care professionals use to share information worldwide.
This new version of ICD has been in progress for several years and involved a large team of contributors. Due to the scope of the project, it will not start being used until 2022. This will allow time for users to familiarize themselves with the new product and prepare for implementation.
One new feature that is being touted as user friendly is a fully electronic version of the product which is a first for ICD. There are also new chapters that include traditional medicine and sexual health. The sexual health chapter is most notable for reclassifying transgender so that is no longer a mental health condition. Another well publicized addition to ICD-11 is gaming disorder is now listed as an addictive disorder.
WHO’s Assistant Director-General for Health Metrics and Measurement, Dr Lubna Alansari, says: “ICD is a cornerstone of health information and ICD-11 will deliver an up-to-date view of the patterns of disease.”