I am not a medical expert, so just from my understanding: if this is according to medical standards to record several causes of death when a patient dies (actual, main, leading, contributing etc causes of death), in other words if multiple causes of death for a patient in source data is not a mistake, then ETL folks should not try to guess which one should go to cdm table. I would create multiple records in cdm death table for each cause of death.
Another question is multiple death dates for a patient. Here, in my opinion, it makes sense to choose one death date “up to ETL”, “the best approximation” etc. Because it is humanly impossible to die in different dates.
However, according to CDM V.5 conventions a person can have only one record in death table: “A person can have up to one record if the source system contains evidence about the Death”, “Each Person may have more than one record of death in the source data. It is the task of the ETL to pick the most plausible or most accurate records to be aggregated and stored as a single record in the DEATH table”.
And, as I see, it was not a case in CDM V.4 conventions for death table “Each Person may have more than one record in the Death table if there is available information for multiple contributing causes of death”.
I can be wrong in my assumptions, so I just want to make it clear for me about “only one record in CDM V.5 death table for a patient”.
Thank you very much for making it clear!