Cross Disciplinary Consultancy: Negation Detection Use Case


Despite considerable effort since the turn of the century to develop Natural Language Processing (NLP) methods and tools for detecting negated terms in chief complaints, few standardised methods have emerged. Those methods that have emerged (e.g. the NegEx algorithm) are confined to local implementations with customised solutions. Important reasons for this lack of progress include (a) limited shareable datasets for developing and testing methods (b) jurisdictional data silos, and (c) the gap between resource-constrained public health practitioners and technical solution developers, typically university researchers and industry developers. To address these three problems ISDS, funded by a grant from the Defense Threat Reduction Agency, organized a consultancy meeting at the University of Utah designed to bring together (a) representatives from public health departments, (b) university researchers focused on the development of computational methods for public health surveillance, (c) members of public health oriented non-governmental organisations, and (d) industry representatives, with the goal of developing a roadmap for the development of validated, standardised and portable resources (methods and data sets) for negation detection in clinical text used for public health surveillance.

Objective: This abstract describes an ISDS initiative to bring together public health practitioners and analytics solution developers from both academia and industry to define a roadmap for the development of algorithms, tools, and datasets to improve the capabilities of current text processing algorithms to identify negated terms (i.e. negation detection).

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Original Publication Year: 
Event/Publication Date: 
January, 2019

June 18, 2019

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