Some context items may have multiple item values. These are referred to as repeating items in HL7 terminology. Repeating items are represented as a set of context data items where all items have same item subject label, role, and name prefix. To differentiate each item, a mandatory item name suffix with a different numeric value is added to the repeating items. The item name suffix will start with the value of one (1) for the first item and increment by one (1) for each successive item in the set to formulate a distinct name for each item. If an application wants to set only one value for a repeating item, it is required to set the item name suffix to “1”. Repeating items are not allowed for additional site-specific suffixes, application-specific suffixes, and other suffixes.
Following is an example of repeating context data items showing a possible set of phone numbers for a hypothetical patient demographics annotation subject:
Item data definitions need to specify an item as a repeating data item in order to use the name suffix explicitly. There are no limitations on the number of item values for repeating items.
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