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In this first module we discuss the importance of the correct certification of cause of death and the role of a medical doctor in producing reliable causes of death statistics.

You should now be able:

•To explain the importance of correct death certification to accurate mortality statistics, to public health policy and planning, as well as the allocation of resources.

•To discuss the quality of death certification in South Africa.

•To explain the role of medical doctors, as part of the official mortality system, for improving quality of death certification, 

•And to discuss the legal, ethical and confidentiality issues related to death certification.