Addressing Deficiencies in Cause-of-Death Data for Poland

Agnieszka Fihel , Institut national d'etudes démographiques / ICMigrations

Due to the low quality of data on mortality, in particular a high proportion of deaths assigned to so-called garbage codes, Poland has been excluded from international comparisons of cause-of-death statistics. The objective of this study is to investigate the occurrence of most frequent garbage codes and establish their potential association with well-defined causes of deaths. The study is based on unique dataset of 388 thousand deaths registered in Poland in 2013. Apart from basic socio-demographic characteristics, the dataset comprises in-detail information on underlying causes of death, as well as the secondary and direct causes of deaths (multiple causes of deaths, MCoD). This is the only dataset on MCoD existing for Poland, and the first analysis of that kind for this country. I intend to execute three types of analysis that: 1) verify whether the occurrence of garbage codes is negatively correlated with the occurrence of specific, well-defined causes of deaths, 2) test the co-occurrence of garbage codes as underlying causes of deaths and specific, well-defined causes of deaths as MCoD, 3) compare the groups of death that include the same combination of MCoDs, but have been assigned to garbage codes or well-defined causes. Preliminary results show that mortality due to well-defined cardiovascular and respiratory diseases is considerably underestimated in Poland. This study aims to identify other well-defined causes of death that are frequently and inappropriately registered as GCs. The final result will consist of re-estimation of mortality due to specific, well-defined causes of death in Poland.

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 Presented in Session P2. Poster Session Ageing, Health and Mortality