Reportable Deaths A Guide for Referring Agencies

Articles of clothing should be submitted to the Coroner's Office as well as any trace evidence that has been removed.
Therapeutic appliances such as endotracheal tubes, catheters, etc. should not be removed.

Reportable Cases

All Accidents, Suicides, or Homicides

  • Abortions (Criminal or self-induced)
  • Anaphylactic shock
  • Anesthetic accident (death on the operating table, or prior to recovery from anesthesia)
  • Animal or insect bites (spiders, bee stings, etc.)
  • Blows or other forms of mechanical violence
  • Burns and scalds from fire, liquid, chemical, radiation, electricity, or lightning
  • Carbon Monoxide poisoning (resulting from natural gas, automobile exhaust, or other sources)
  • Crushed beneath falling objects
  • Cutting or stabbing
  • Drowning (actual or suspected)
  • Drug overdose from medication, chemical or poison ingestion, whether actual or suspected
  • Environmental Deaths (hypothermia, hyperthermia, sunstroke, heat exhaustion)
  • Explosion
  • Fall
  • Firearms
  • Fractures of bones (not pathological - even when not primarily responsible for the death, i.e., hip fractures)
  • Hanging
  • Poisoning (food, occupational, or other)
  • Strangulation
  • Suffocation (foreign object in bronchi - by bed clothing, food, or other means)
  • Therapeutic complications
  • Traumatic Injury (regardless of time interval between injury and death)
  • Vehicular accidents (automobile, aircraft, bus,railroad,motorcycle, or other)

Occupational Deaths

Instances in which the environment of present or past employment may have caused or contributed to death by trauma or disease are reportable, including:

  • Abrasions received during employment (which in the opinion of the attending physician are of sufficient importance, either as the cause or contributing factor to cause of death, to warrant certifying them on the death certificate)
  • Burns (flame, chemical, or electrical) received during employment (which in the opinion of the attending physician are of sufficient importance, either as the cause or contributing factor to cause of death, to warrant certifying them on the death certificate)
  • Caisson Disease (Bends)
  • Contusions received during employment (which in the opinion of the attending physician are of sufficient importance, either as the cause or contributing factor to cause of death, to warrant certifying them on the death certificate)
  • Fractures received during employment (which in the opinion of the attending physician are of sufficient importance, either as the cause or contributing factor to cause of death, to warrant certifying them on the death certificate)
  • Industrial infections (anthrax, septicemia following wounds, gas bacillus infections,tetanus, etc.)
  • Industrial poisoning (acids, alkalies, aniline, benzine, carbon monoxide, carbon tetrachloride, lead nitrous fumes, etc.)
  • Silicosis, asbestos

Sudden & Suspicious Deaths

Instances in which death occurs when in apparent good health or in any suspicious or unusual manner are reportable, including:
  • All deaths occurring within twenty-four (24) hours of admission to a hospital unless the patient has been under continuous care of a physician for a natural disease, which is responsible for death.
  • Death of persons when the attending physician cannot be located, or the person has not been seen by a physician within a reasonable amount of time.
  • Deaths of infants, under 2 years of age, including Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)
  • Deaths under unknown circumstances, whenever there are no witnesses, or where little or no information can be elicited concerning the deceased person. Deaths of this type include those persons whose bodies are found in the open, in places of temporary shelter, or in their homes under conditions, which offer no clues as to the cause of death.
  • Deaths where abuse or neglect is suspected
  • Drug abuse, including alcohol
  • Sudden death on the street, at home, in a public place, or at place of employment