Body functions code (ICF 2001) N[NNNN]

Identifying and definitional attributes

Metadata item type:Value Domain
Synonymous names:Body functions
METeOR identifier:288336
Registration status:Community Services (retired), Superseded 16/10/2006

A code set representing the Body Functions component of the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF 2001).

Context:Human functioning and disability.

Representational attributes

Classification scheme:International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health 2001
Representation class:Code
Data type:Number
Maximum character length:5
Permissible values:
1Mental functions
2Sensory functions and pain
3Voice and speech functions
4Functions of the cardiovascular, haematological, immunological and respiratory systems
5Functions of the digestive, metabolic and endocrine systems
6Genitourinary and reproductive functions
7Neuromusculoskeletal and movement-related functions
8Functions of the skin and related structures
Supplementary values:
Theabove are ICF chapter headings. For 3, 4, and 5-digit codes under these chapter headings, please refer to the Body Functions component of the ICF.

Collection and usage attributes

Guide for use:

Body functions are the physiological functions of body systems (including psychological functions).

Body refers to the human organism as a whole; hence it includes the brain and its functions, that is, the mind.

The 'Body functions' classification is a neutral list of functions that can be used to record positive or neutral body function as well as impairment of body function.

'Impairments' of body functions are problems in body functions such as a loss or significant departure from population standards or averages.

This metadata item, in conjunction with Impairment extent code X, enables the provision of information about the presence and extent of impairment for given body functions.

'Body functions' and 'Body structures' together represent one of the three components that define the concept 'Disability'. 'Activities and participation' and 'Environmental factors' are the other two components.

Examples of the Permissible values listed in the Body Functions component of the ICF:

CODE 1     Mental functions

Global mental functions, specific mental functions.

CODE 2     Sensory functions and pain

Seeing and related functions, hearing and vestibular functions, additional sensory functions including pain.

CODE 3     Voice and speech functions

Functions of producing sounds and speech, such as articulation, fluency and rhythm.

CODE 4     Functions of the cardiovascular, haematological, immunological and respiratory systems

Functions of the cardiovascular system, functions of the haematological system, functions of the respiratory system.

CODE 5     Functions of the digestive, metabolic and the endocrine system

Functions related to the digestive system, functions relating to metabolism and the endocrine system.

CODE 6     Genitourinary and reproductive functions

Urinary functions, genital and reproductive functions.

CODE 7     Neuromusculoseletal and movement-related functions

Functions of the joints and bones, muscle functions, movement functions.

CODE 8     Functions of the skin and related structures

Functions of the skin, functions of the hair and nails.

Collection methods:

Where multiple body functions or impairments of body functions are recorded, the following prioritising system should be useful.

  • The first recorded body function or impairment of body function is the one having the greatest impact on the individual.
  • Second and subsequent body function or impairment of body function are also of relevance to the individual.

The prefix b denotes the domains within the component of Body Functions.

Codes at the ICF chapter levels (i.e. single digit headings such as 'Mental functions') may be recorded. If further detail is required, the Body Functions component of the ICF provides 3, 4 and 5-digit codes. For example, in the Body Functions classification there are these codes:

b2          Sensory functions and pain

b210       Seeing functions

b2102     Quality of vision

b21022    Contrast sensitivity   

In order to indicate the presence and extent in relation to a given body function, Impairment extent code Xshould also be recorded.

Multiple codes may be recorded.



Source and reference attributes

Submitting organisation:Australian Institute of Health and Welfare which is the Australian Collaborating Centre for the World Health Organization Family of International Classifications.

World Health Organization (WHO) 2001. ICF: International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health. Geneva: WHO

Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) 2003. ICF Australian User Guide Version 1.0. Canberra: AIHW

Reference documents:

Further information on the ICF, including more detailed codes, can be found in the ICF itself and the ICF Australian User Guide (AIHW 2003), at the following websites:

Relational attributes

Related metadata references:

Has been superseded by Body function code (ICF 2001) AN[NNNN] Health, Standard 29/11/2006, Disability, Standard 13/08/2015, Community Services (retired), Standard 16/10/2006