Climate emergency, Permaculture and Hellacious were added to the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) in January 2020 to ensure that popular and meaningful words, terms and even slang are officially recognized in the evolution of the English language.

The Candello Taxonomy, which is a scaled-up Data Dictionary, is updated twice a year to reflect changes and trends in health care delivery and consumption, and the corresponding and emerging risks. Unlike the OED, however, the Candello Taxonomy is transformed into data that can reveal trends and insights. But the trends and insights are only as useful as the Taxonomy enables them to be.


The proper care and feeding of the Candello Taxonomy—with infrastructure and governance, and a continuous process of input and feedback from CRICO and Candello Members—ensures that it has the “sensitivity” and “specificity” to make Candello data useful and reliable. An ill-conceived, under-supported and rudder-less taxonomy is often to blame for un-reliability. Candello does not have that problem.

This highly governed taxonomy is overseen by our Taxonomy Governance Committee—including expert representation from legal, underwriting, data analytics, risk, and patient safety—which ensures the taxonomy remains consistently relevant and effective for identification and analysis of current and emerging risk. Consistency is further supported through regular audits of the data output and ongoing education for the nurses who code the claims.


It is with great pride and confidence that we share the most recent changes to the Candello Taxonomy with our Candello Members. The trends and events affecting care delivery and consumption reflected in this July release include:

  • Societal Changes. Making Discrimination a Primary instead of Secondary Allegation category to reflect the growing focus on social disparities in health care.
  • Care Continuum. Modifying and expanding the previous Location code known only as “Extended Care Facility/Nursing Home” to more accurately reflect the type of care delivered, with new codes for Nursing Home, Skilled Nursing, Assisted Living, Memory Care and Acute Rehab.
  • The Pandemic. An expanded definition for Telehealth and a new code for Virtual Visits, as well as new codes for COVID-19 and Workplace Violence.
  • Insights about Causation. 14 new Contributing Factor codes, and several modifications to Contributing Factor definitions and labels.
  • Lessons from “Other”. New codes related to Medication, Co-morbidities, Specialty and Responsible Service.

Against conventional Taxonomy wisdom, we have an “Other” option in all our categories. This assures that our well-defined categories remain as clean as possible. Taxonomy experts don’t like “other,” in general, because they believe it can create gaps or holes in data. We believe that "Other" keeps the data in our established categories consistent and helps us learn of new and emerging issues and trends from our clients, as opposed to avoiding holes for avoidance sake.


What makes the Candello Taxonomy valuable is understanding what its users want to learn from the data, so it is evolved to provide this learning. And as pristine as we endeavor to make the Taxonomy, its ultimate value is in how it is used and the depth and consistency with which it is applied.

Some examples of how Candello data is used include:

  • Candello Reports: In-depth evaluations of current trends in clinical risk and medical malpractice business risks. Topics range from communication failures and risks in the diagnostic process to emergency medicine and obstetrics.
  • Peer Review Publications Candello’s national Comparative Benchmarking System (Candello) data are cited by researchers in national publications and used by our Candello members—commercial and captive insurers, hospitals, health care organizations—to identify clinical risks, benchmark against peers, and prioritize patient safety efforts.
  • Clinical Case Studies: Created from actual claims, our customized case studies can be targeted to the specific topics and issues you would like to highlight in your risk and patient safety programs.
  • Educational Webinars:  Candello Educational webinars share clinical and business insights from medical malpractice data.
  • Comparative analyses and board reports for Candello Members. 

We’re excited to see what these Taxonomy changes enable Candello Members to learn and how that learning informs their business decisions and the decisions clinicians make to reduce harm and loss.

Candello Members can see the July 202 Taxonomy Updates in the online Candello Community.

Written By
Vice President, Candello
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