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SCAN Death Tables

Fetal Death
Infant Death
Maternal Death
Medical Certification of Death
Multiple Cause of Death
Neonatal Death
Occurrence Data
Perinatal Death
Postneonatal Death
Rate Calculations with Small Numbers
Residence Data
Underlying Cause of Death
Variable Breakdown

The following link shows a listing of table variables and associated characteristics when generating a table.

Animated Formulas

The following link shows the formulas used to calculate rates with examples.

Cause of Death Breakdown

The following link show the relationship of death categories when trying to locate a specific health event from the general category listing when generating a table.

Comparability - In order that disease classifications may be consistent with advances in medical science and changes in diagnostic practice, any system for categorizing causes of death must periodically be revised. Major revisions in the International Classification of Diseases (ICD) , by which causes of death are classified, occur approximately every ten years, and each decennial revision of the ICD has produced some break in comparability of cause of death statistics. In South Carolina, the Sixth Revision of the ICD was used for 1949 -1957; the Seventh Revision for 1958-1968; the Eighth Revision for 1969-1978; and the Ninth Revision went into effect in 1979.

Prior to 1949, under the first five revisions, cause of death was selected on the basis of priority tables for multiple causes, as set forth in The Manual For Joint Causes of Death. Under the Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, and Ninth Revisions of the International Lists, the cause selected for tabulation has been the "underlying" cause, defined as the "disease or injury which initiated the train of morbid events, leading directly to death" (ICDA, Eighth Revision, 1968, Vol. 1, page xxix).

The introduction of the concept of "underlying" cause in 1949, with the Sixth Revision, resulted in a basic change in classification of death which seriously affects the interpretation of mortality trends before and after 1949. The Seventh Revision was essentially a clarification of the Sixth Revision, but the Eighth Revision introduced some major modifications in classification lists and coding procedures. The Ninth Revision also brought some major changes in classification and coding.

In order to make valid comparisons of mortality by cause for events classified by different revisions of the ICD, comparability ratios were developed. Comparability ratios are computed by the National Center for Health Statistics from the results of dual coding of certificates according to the old and the new procedures. The comparability ratios used with the Ninth Revision were derived by taking the number of deaths classified to a given cause by the Ninth Revision and dividing the result by the number of deaths classified to that cause by the Eighth Revision. Provisional comparability ratios for the United States as a whole, based on the Eighth and Ninth Revisions, have been developed for a limited number of causes. These can be found in the Monthly Vital Statistics Report, Vol. 28, Number 11 published by the National Center for Health Statistics, February 29, 1980.

Fetal Death - Death prior to the complete expulsion or extraction from its mother of a product of human conception, irrespective of the duration of pregnancy; the death is indicated by the fact that after such expulsion or extraction, the fetus does not breathe or show any other evidence of life, such as beating of the heart, pulsation of the umbilical cord, or definite movement of voluntary muscles (Definition recommended by World Health Organization in 1950). A fetal death is required to be reported if the fetus has completed or passed the twentieth week of gestation or weighs 350 grams or more (Weight criteria effective in 1978). Vital Statistics Laws and Regulations 61-19: Vital Statistics, Section 21(a). Heartbeats are to be distinguished from transient cardiac contractions; respirations are to be distinguished from fleeting respiratory efforts or gasps.

Infant Death - Death of a live born infant under one year of age.

Maternal Death - Death of a woman whose cause of death is assigned to Complications of Pregnancy, Childbirth, and Puerperium(Ninth Revision ICD 630-676). If death occurred more than 42 days after termination of pregnancy, the death is not considered to be pregnancy-related and is not assigned to codes 630-676.

Medical Certification of Death - The medical certification of death can be made only by a person authorized by law, usually a physician or a coroner. Thus, the reliability and accuracy of cause-of-death statistics are, to a large extent, governed by the acumen and ability of the doctor or coroner to make the proper diagnosis and by the care with which the death certificate is completed. It is recognized that death may not result from a single morbid condition. Since 1980, South Carolina medical certifiers have been asked to provide contributing conditions adding to the underlying cause of death information.

Multiple Cause of Death - Cause of death statistics have, for many years, been based only on the underlying cause of death, the single disease or injury that initiated the sequence of events leading to death or the circumstances of the accident that produced the fatal injury. The underlying cause is selected by a computerized algorithm called the Automated Classification of Medical Entities (ACME) from the ordering of conditions reported by physicians or coroners on the death certificate. Analysis of the underlying cause of death information allows for simplified, consistent reporting of data and provides a means of evaluating the impact of public health initiatives. When more than one cause is reported on the certificate, however, the tabulation of only one cause for mortality statistics may lead to a loss of information on any condition that is an element in the death but that is not selected as the underlying cause of death. Cause-of-death statistics are usually based on the underlying cause of death, a single disease or injury circumstance that initiated the sequence of events leading to death. In this system, each death is assigned one underlying cause of death. However, death certificates provide for the inclusion of more information than the underlying cause of death alone. The immediate cause of death, antecedent causes giving rise to the immediate cause, and other significant conditions contributing to the death also may be entered by the medical certifier. These data provide a way of estimating the impact of significant co-factors contributing to a death and offer a means of utilizing information on causes, such as hypertension, asthma, bronchitis, and diabetes, that are frequently present at death but that are usually not lethal by themselves. Each death is assigned one underlying cause and up to nineteen contributing causes of death.

Neonatal Death - Death occurring during the neonatal period (i.e. under 28 days of age).

Occurrence Data - Data allocated to the place in South Carolina where the event occurred, regardless of the usual residence of the person involved.

Perinatal Death - Death occuring during the perinatal period (i.e. a live born infant less than 28 days of age and a fetus that has passed the twentieth week of gestation or weighs 350 grams or more).

Postneonatal Death - Death occurring during the postneonatal period (i.e. 28-364 days of age).

Race - Race of the decedent is reported on death certificates. Fetal deaths are reported by race of mother.

Rate Calculations with Small Numbers - There are variations in all statistics which are the result of chance. This characteristic is of particular importance in classifications with small numbers of events where small variations are proportionately large in relation to the base figure. As an example, small changes in the number of deaths in small population areas or in the number of deaths from uncommon causes could result in large changes in these crude rates. For this reason, rates for counties with small populations or other small bases should be used cautiously. In these tables, rates are not calculated for places of less than 2500 population or when the number of events is less than 5 for a particular category, due to the known instability of rates based on small numbers.

Residence Data - Data allocated to the place in South Carolina where the person normally resided, regardless of where the event occurred.

Underlying Cause of Death - Disease or injury that initiated the sequence of morbid events leading directly to death. (International Classification of Disease)

Population Data: Population Data for years 1990-2000 are provided by South Carolina Office of Research and Statistics

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