Quality of cause-of-death reporting using ICD-10 drowning codes : a descriptive study of 69 countries

Lu, Tsung-Hsueh, Lunetta, Philippe, & Walker, Sue M. (2010) Quality of cause-of-death reporting using ICD-10 drowning codes : a descriptive study of 69 countries. BMC Medical Research Methodology, 10(30), pp. 1-6.

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Background: The systematic collection of high-quality mortality data is a prerequisite in designing relevant drowning prevention programmes. This descriptive study aimed to assess the quality (i.e., level of specificity) of cause-of-death reporting using ICD-10 drowning codes across 69 countries.----------

Methods: World Health Organization (WHO) mortality data were extracted for analysis. The proportion of unintentional drowning deaths coded as unspecified at the 3-character level (ICD-10 code W74) and for which the place of occurrence was unspecified at the 4th character (.9) were calculated for each country as indicators of the quality of cause-of-death reporting.----------

Results: In 32 of the 69 countries studied, the percentage of cases of unintentional drowning coded as unspecified at the 3-character level exceeded 50%, and in 19 countries, this percentage exceeded 80%; in contrast, the percentage was lower than 10% in only 10 countries. In 21 of the 56 countries that report 4-character codes, the percentage of unintentional drowning deaths for which the place of occurrence was unspecified at the 4th character exceeded 50%, and in 15 countries, exceeded 90%; in only 14 countries was this percentage lower than 10%.----------

Conclusion: Despite the introduction of more specific subcategories for drowning in the ICD-10, many countries were found to be failing to report sufficiently specific codes in drowning mortality data submitted to the WHO.

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ID Code: 31970
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: Mortality, Drowning, ICD-10
DOI: 10.1186/1471-2288-10-30
ISSN: 1471-2288
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > PUBLIC HEALTH AND HEALTH SERVICES (111700) > Health Information Systems (incl. Surveillance) (111711)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Research Centres > National Centre for Health Information Research & Training
Current > Schools > School of Public Health & Social Work
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2010 BioMed Central Ltd and the Authors
Copyright Statement: This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons
Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in
any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Deposited On: 26 Apr 2010 22:57
Last Modified: 29 Feb 2012 14:24

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