Each year in Oregon, children die because of preventable causes. Child death review is intended to identify strategies for preventing child deaths by improving health care, education, social services, and death investigation practices.
Findings from child death review inform our understanding of childhood injury patterns and child abuse as well as the factors that contribute to those tragic events. They have impacted product recalls through the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, recommendations of the American Academy of Pediatrics, and numerous policies and practices at state and local levels.
In Oregon, the child death review system primarily includes the State Child Death Review Team (state team), 36 County Death Review Teams (county teams), and Critical Incident Review Team (CIRT).
The state team was established by
Oregon Revised Statute (ORS) 418.748 in 1989 and county teams were established by
ORS 418.785 in 1991. The Critical Incident Review Team was established by Oregon Department of Human Services in 2004 and beginning in 2017 was required by
ORS 418.806 through 418.816.
Please explore this website to learn more about the work being done in Oregon to help keep children safe.
Generations-long social, economic, and environmental inequities result in adverse health outcomes. Systematic oppressions affect communities differently and may have a greater influence on health outcomes than either individual choices or one’s ability to access health care. Some of the reviewed child deaths are not the result of the actions or behaviors of those who died, or their parents or caregivers. Social factors such as where they live, how much money or education they have and how they are treated because of one or more of their identities can also contribute to a child’s death. When reviewing individual cases and interpreting the data, it is critical not to lose sight of these systemic, avoidable, and unjust factors. These factors perpetuate the inequities we observe in child deaths across populations in Oregon. It is critical that death review team members and the system’s members represent, identify and understand the life-long inequities that persist across groups to eradicate them. Reducing health disparities through policies, practices, and organizational systems can help improve opportunities for all Oregonians.