MPHI has held the contract for Michigan’s “Child Death Review” (CDR) program since its inception in 1995. Staff members attend and provide technical assistance and support to county-level CDR meetings in all of Michigan’s 83 counties to assist local review teams with case identification and reporting requirements.
Under the Child Protection Law (MCL 722.627b), the CDR program supports voluntary, multi-disciplinary CDR teams in every Michigan county. These teams, which include more than 1,200 professionals collectively, meet regularly to review the circumstances surrounding the deaths of children in their communities. The average team has 15 members and includes at a minimum: the county prosecutor; state, county and/or local law enforcement; representatives from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS); local public health; and the county medical examiner. Additional members may include representatives from emergency medical services, mental health, education, pediatricians, hospital staff, and other human service providers or community leaders.
As review teams have matured over the years, most have evolved from a focus on investigation and data collection to translating findings into action to prevent deaths. On average, the teams review more than 80% of child deaths caused by external circumstances. Counties with smaller populations often review 100% of deaths, including those from natural causes.
MPHI hosts an annual training for CDR team members, where the causes of child death are explained, the roles of the disciplines on the teams are described, and ways to maintain effective review teams and identify strategies for preventing child deaths are identified.
The Child Protection Law also created a state-level team of professionals to “identify and make recommendations on policy and statutory changes pertaining to child fatalities, and to guide statewide prevention, education and training efforts.” This Child Death State Advisory Team is required to include representation from MDHHS, law enforcement, a county prosecuting attorney and medical examiner, and the children’s ombudsmen. Other team members also add expertise on the causes of child death and prevention, including a pediatrician who specializes in child abuse and neglect, and a staff member of the Michigan Chapter of American Academy of Pediatrics. The team has met quarterly since 1998. MDHHS chairs the meetings, which include review of local CDR findings and current state-level issues affecting children’s health, safety, and protection.
MPHI has provided support to the “Michigan Cancer Consortium” (MCC) since 1987. MCC is a statewide partnership that provides a forum for collaboration among 110+ member organizations that share the goal of improving cancer outcomes for Michigan residents. The MCC is recognized for its dynamic, timely, conscientious response to evolving scientific knowledge and for believing that achieving comprehensive cancer control is leveraged by coordinated efforts and member synergy.
MPHI provides technical assistance and support in several key areas.
The MCC’s current selected priorities are as follows.
The consortium has been honored with several awards, including the Comprehensive Cancer Control State Coalition Impact award in 2014, first place in “I’m Your Community Guide” contest in 2012, “Heroes of Breast Cancer Leadership Award” from Karmanos Cancer Institute in 2009, and the “Bronze Telly Award” in 2007.
Each year in America, there are approximately 2,500 deaths and 350,000 medical visits due to fires and/or burns. Because working smoke alarms cut the risk of dying in a fire almost in half, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) funded MPHI to lead the “Sound Off for Fire Safety” project.
From 2014-2015, fire department and injury prevention teams delivered education and outreach to low-income children in five communities (Indianapolis, IN; Lexington, KY; Miami, FL; Milwaukee, WI; and New Haven, CT). The goal of the project was to teach children and their families about the importance of having working smoke alarms in their homes and teach them about fire safety. The teams worked with second- and third-grade teachers to deliver professionally developed fire-safety lessons. Students were assigned to test their smoke alarms at home and report to their teachers how many alarms did and didn’t work. The children then charted results as part of a math lesson.
With teachers serving as trusted liaisons to the families, the teams conducted visits to the homes that lacked smoke alarms. They installed alarms at no cost, inspected the homes for fire hazards, and explained how to correct the hazards.
The project team included MPHI, Injury Free Coalition for Kids, Young Minds Inspired (a curriculum company), and Project Manager Meri-K Appy. MPHI managed the project and the subcontractors, reviewed and approved materials, attended the training meeting of the pilot sites’ representatives, and filed reports. Injury Free is one of the country’s most effective injury-prevention programs; its staff and firefighters visited elementary schools, followed up with teachers, scheduled home visits, and collected and reported evaluation data. Ms. Appy is a leading fire-prevention and safety expert; she has more than 35 years of experience helping fire departments develop and implement outreach programs.
In 2015, additional funding supported the work of the prior teams and four new teams. In addition, 12 “starter sites” received the educational materials, but no smoke alarms or funding. All of the teams are continuing to use and refine the model of educating children and families about fire safety and installing smoke alarms in homes.
MPHI’s National Center for the Review and Prevention of Child Deaths has received funding from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) since 2013 to serve as the Data Coordinating Center for the “Sudden Death in the Young Case Registry” initiative.
The National Center developed a new module for its existing “National Child Death Review Case Reporting System” (CRS) to collect data on cases of sudden cardiac death in the young (SCDY) and sudden unexpected death from epilepsy (SUDEP). The purpose of the project is to develop the CRS to allow for better tracking, reporting, and prevention of sudden deaths in people from infancy to 19 years of age. The project is also developing a biorepository of DNA from young people whose deaths are reviewed as part of the registry. The DNA is used to support the National Institutes of Health’s quantitative and qualitative research and translational research to reduce sudden deaths in the young; it includes clinical information that can be a resource for research studying SCDY and SUDEP.
In the first year of the project, MPHI conducted a needs assessment and strategic planning sessions with stakeholders and experts. This collaboration led to development of national standards for autopsies when SCDY and SUDEP occur. Eligible jurisdictions applied in June 2014 for CDC funding to participate in the Sudden Death in the Young Case Registry. By the end of 2014, the CDC awarded grants to ten jurisdictions and data collection began in January 2015.
MPHI hosts the CRS, designed the new module, and provides implementation services to state grantees. Staff also provide a help desk for funded states, provide training on the new module, support states’ data acquisition efforts, and subcontract for the DNA biorepository with the University of Michigan.
for additional information.
Each year in the U.S. approximately 4,500 infants die suddenly, and most of these sudden and unexpected infant deaths (SUID) occur when infants are sleeping.
Recognizing the need to generate detailed and timely infant death-related public health information, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) designed a National SUID Case Registry. The CDC chose MPHI’s existing National Child Death Review Case Reporting System (CRS) as the foundation for the new SUID Case Registry. In 2010, MPHI received funding to develop a SUID module for the CRS.
MPHI’s National Center for Review and Prevention of Child Deaths maintains the database and provides implementation, systems hosting, data management, and training services to the 12 states receiving CDC funds to participate in the registry. Data analysis is conducted at local and state levels, and Child Death Review teams in the funded states use the data to identify prevention activities. Data are available to external researchers in accordance with the National Center’s Data Dissemination Policy.
CDC and National Center staff conduct annual in-person site visits with state grantees and host an annual group reverse-site visit to conduct strategic planning and improve quality. Visit www.childdeathreview.org for additional information.