WHO Releases 2012 Verbal Autopsy Instrument

“In today’s world, the majority of deaths go unregistered,” but “the information that comes from accurate and complete records of deaths — who died, and why — constitutes a huge resource for evidence-based health planning and development,” Peter Byass, a professor of global health at Umea University in Sweden and director of the Umea Centre for Global Health Research, writes in this post in the PLoS “Speaking of Medicine” blog. “This week sees the release by the World Health Organization of the 2012 WHO Verbal Autopsy Instrument, a major new global resource for systematically recording the details of deaths,” he notes, adding, “This new verbal autopsy (VA) instrument brings together the best aspects of many previous VA questionnaires, and also incorporates the accumulated experience of the team who have worked on developing it” (8/22).