Data mapping allows for connections between two systems. This connection allows for data initially captured for one purpose to be translated and used for another purpose. One system in a map is identified as the source while the other is the target.
- Source is the system of origin (mapped from)
- Target is the destination of the map (mapped to)
Knowing the reason a map was created is fundamental to understanding a map. The specific situation or purpose of the map is known as applied mapping. Applied mappings are used for many things such as:
- Patient care data exchange
- External reporting requirements
- Longitudinal data trending
Maps can be forward or backward maps. A forward map is a map from the source system to the target system, while a backward map is from the target system back to the source. The direction of the map will vary the mapping end results.