By WECT Staff | October 7, 2020 at 2:46 PM EDT – Updated October 7 at 2:46 PM
RALEIGH, N.C. (WECT) – The N.C. Department of Health and Human Services announced on Wednesday that the agency will launch a new electronic system to help streamline the process of creating death records.
The current system is a manual, paper-based process that can take months for death certificates to be registered. The new system, NC Database Application for Vital Records (NCDAVE), will “allow for greater efficiency, increased data accuracy and consistency in reporting processes.”
State health officials say NCDAVE will help deliver death certificates faster, reduce travel cost for funeral firms, and improve disease tracking for public health purposes.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the importance of having accurate vital records available as quickly as possible,” said State Health Director Elizabeth Cuervo Tilson. “By accelerating the time to finalize death certificates from more than a month to a matter of days, we will be able to understand and respond to public health trends faster.”
Through NCDAVE, North Carolina’s funeral directors, medical certifiers and medical examiners will compile death information electronically, which can then be submitted to local registrars for the creation of a death certificate and then onward to registers of deeds for issuance.
“Implementing NCDAVE will greatly reduce wait times for families who need their loved ones’ death records and enhance the vital statistics we collect for the state,” said Mark Benton, assistant secretary for Public Health.
The staggered rollout will begin on Oct. 19 in eight counties (Buncombe, Durham, Forsyth, Guilford, Johnston, Mecklenburg, Orange, and Wake) with all 100 counties in North Carolina coming online by June.
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