Note from Charlie McCay on NA flavor

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From: [1] On Behalf Of Charlie McCay Sent: May 27, 2005 6:36 AM To: MnM Subject: NullFlavor for "Known to be nothing"


I suggest that the description of nullFlavor "NA" be changed from "No proper value is applicable in this context (e.g., last menstrual period for a male)." to "Known to have no proper value (e.g., last menstrual period for a male, or fax number for a role that chooses not to use a fax)."

The problem is that "applicable this context" is not defined - and the example compounds the problem since the context ("male patient") is contextual information that would have been available in the message.

Also there is an interesting comparison with "UNK" - "A proper value is applicable, but not known.", which is subtyped by "NASK" "This information has not been sought (e.g., patient was not asked)". I would have expected "not asked" to include the possibility of "NA" being the answer when the question is asked -- eg wrt telephone number - once the patient is asked they say they do not have a phone. I would therefore suggest that "UNK" - "A proper value is applicable, but not known." be changed to "A proper value may be applicable, but not known.",

If there is no negative comment on the list I will produce a harmonisation proposal to this effect

all the best


Charlie McCay, Ramsey Systems Ltd, 23D Dogpole, Shrewsbury, Shropshire SY1 1ES

tel 01743 232278 / 07808 570172 skype: charliemccay