Coreference

As described above, sometimes information across sentences must be combined to truly understand the patient's clinical state. A single entity (which could be a finding, a person, or some other object mentioned in a report) may be referred to in more than one sentence. True to the human inclination towards conciseness, once an entity has been evoked, we can refer to the entity with shortened phrases, including pronouns (e.g., "it,'' "he," or "she") or definite noun phrases (e.g., "the finding,'' or "her mother''). When two expressions refer to the same entity, they corefer. Determining which referring expressions refer to which referent is important in understanding a clinical report.

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