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Assessment of Medical Certificate of Cause of Death at a New Teaching Hospital in Vadodara

Author(s): Amul B. Patel, Hitesh Rathod, Himanshu Rana, Viren Patel

Journal: National Journal of Community Medicine
ISSN 0976-3325

Volume: 2;
Issue: 3;
Start page: 349;
Date: 2011;
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Keywords: Key-words: Death certificate | MCCD | Major error | Minor error | mortality statistics | ICD

The study was conducted to find out errors in the medical certification of cause of death during July 2011 at a new teaching hospital in Vadodara. All certificates of in-hospital deaths in medical record department, from May 2010 to June 2011, were assessed for major and minor errors. Data were analyzed with SPSS 17 version software. The results revealed that out of 40 death certificates, not a single was free from any error. Major errors occurred in 23(57.5%) cases with improper sequencing (55%) as most frequent. Most common minor error was the absence of time interval between the onset of disease and death (92.5%). No significant association was found between major errors and factors like age, sex, ward and underlying cause of death. This study concluded that educational intervention is necessary to increase physicians' awareness regarding importance of medical certificate of cause of death and accuracy of death certificates.
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