Health situation in the Americas - Basic indicators 2008
Publisher/Organizer: Pan American Health Organization (PAHO/WHO)
Publication date: 2009
Language: English, Spanish
"Information on 56 basic indicators for 48 countries and territories, as well as for groupings of countries or sub-regions. This year the publication includes an analysis of the quality of mortality data based on the proportion of mortality under-registration and on the proportion of deaths assigned to ill-defined and unknown causes. This information was used to develop an index for classifying the quality of mortality data.
The results show that of the 32 countries studied, 19 (59%) have good quality mortality data, and 7 countries (22%) have poor or very poor quality mortality data. In addition to problems with data quality, 2 countries from Central America and 14 Caribbean countries were excluded from the analysis due to their critical situation in the availability of mortality data.
There is also a comparison between estimated infant and maternal mortality using the World Health Organization methodology and those calculated from data reported by the countries. This comparison allows for better visualization of differences between different ways of measuring the same indicator and provides a parameter for discussing the validity of these important health indicators.
Information required for decision-making must be available, but also accurate and timely. In this publication we want to emphasize those aspects that reveal differences in the quality of data observed among the different countries in the Region. By doing so, it is expected that those responsible for health statistics in the countries of the Americas will be encouraged to implement improvements in the collection, validation, analysis and dissemination of data." [Mirta Roses Periago PAHO Director]