The statewide child fatality review program was created by legislation in 2000 with the goal of decreasing the incidence of preventable childhood deaths and injuries. The state team is chaired by the Chief Medical Examiner and co-chaired by the Medical Director of the Department of Public Health (DPH). Eleven local teams meet under the leadership of the elected District Attorneys’ Offices to conduct reviews of individual cases. The local teams provide recommendations which are sent to the state team to be considered for further action, including changes to policy, practice, or regulation.
The OCA takes an active role on the state team as an ex officio member. Some child fatalities reviewed by the OCA as critical incidents are also reviewed by local child fatality review teams. OCA staff attend many local team meetings and attempt to attend whenever the death being reviewed was the subject of a critical incident report.
The OCA commends the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner (OCME), DPH, and the District Attorneys for their leadership roles in this important multi-disciplinary work.