Tuesday, January 9, 2018 - 12:30pm to 1:30pm
038 Townshend Hall, 1885 Neil Ave
Verbal Autopsy: A Mix Methods Approach in the Era of CRVS Strengthening
Verbal autopsy is an interview-based method for assigning a cause to deaths when traditional autopsy and cause certification are not available. Verbal autopsy has been developed and used extensively in research settings but not for routine cause of death assignment. As part of ongoing work to strengthen civil registration and vital statistics systems in developing countries, verbal autopsy is being adapted for routine use in mortality surveillance. This involves standardizing the interview questionnaires, the interview design, and the automated algorithms used to process the resulting data and assign a cause of death. We will discuss our study of the verbal autopsy interview in a number of settings in Africa and our efforts to improve the verbal autopsy algorithms and produce open-source software to implement them in routine mortality surveillance.