Birth & Death Records

Child Fatality Review

Mission: To reduce the incidence of preventable child deaths.
What is Child Fatality Review (CFR)?
Child Fatality Review (CFR) is the process of reviewing all unexpected and unexplained child deaths. The process for conducting a child death review includes: gathering and presenting information, identifying contributing factors, and formulating data driven recommendations to prevent future child deaths.

Ohio CFR Legal Mandates

Child Fatality Review was signed into law under House Bill 448 in June 2000. The rules and mandates are in the Ohio Revised Code section 307.621 and in the Ohio Administrative Code section 3701-67-02. An amendment in 2009 provided confidentiality protection of data at the state level. Each county must establish a CFR board or join with other counties to form a regional board. Each CFR board must review the deaths of children under 18 years old residing in that county, regardless of county of death.

CFR Confidentiality

Child Fatality Review meetings are not public meetings and are not subject to Sunshine Laws. All statements, work products, information related to CFR are confidential. All information and records acquired by the CFR board are confidential and not subject to subpoena, discovery or introduction into evidence in any civil or criminal proceedings. Violation of confidentiality is a second degree misdemeanor.

CFR Process

The CFR board must meet at least once per year to review all deaths of children under 18 years old. By April 1st of each year, the CFR board chairperson must submit to the Ohio Department of Health :

 The data collected for each review

 The number of child deaths that were not reviewed

 Recommendations for action that might prevent other deaths

By September 30th of each year, the Ohio Department of Health and the Ohio Childrens Trust Fund prepare and distribute an annual report for the state.

Uses for CFR Data
Since the establishment of CFR in 2000, numerous local CFR boards have made recommendation for prevention of future deaths. Recommendations become initiatives only when resources, priorities and authority converge to make changes happen. Examples of areas where CFR findings have resulted in initiatives include:

 The strengthened Ohio Graduated Driver License Law

 Safe Sleep campaigns

 Youth suicide prevention programs

Locally, the CFR board has created a baby safety booklet and provided teen suicide data to support peer helper suicide prevention programs.

National groups that are interested in CFR data include:

 Consumer Product Safety Commission

 CDC, Healthy People 2020

 National SAFE KIDS

CFR Goals

Promote cooperation, collaboration and communication among all groups that serve families and children

Maintain a database of all child deaths to develop an understanding of the causes and incidences of those deaths

Recommend and develop plans for implementing local service and program changes; and to advise ODH of aggregate data, trends and patterns.

Mandated Members

County Coroner*

Chief of Police or Sheriff*

Executive Director of public children service agency*

Public Health Official*

Executive Director of a board of alcohol, drug addiction and mental health services*

Pediatrician or Family

* Or designee

Additional Members

County Prosecutor

Fire/EMS Representative

Other Child Advocates



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