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April 30, 1938


Author Affiliations

Chief Statistician for Vital Statistics, Bureau of the Census WASHINGTON, D. C.; Passed Assistant Surgeon, United States Public Health Service PHILADELPHIA

From the Office of Vital Statistics, Bureau of the Census, United States Department of Commerce, and the Office of Heart Disease Investigations, branch office of the National Institute of Health.

JAMA. 1938;110(18):1413-1415. doi:10.1001/jama.1938.02790180001001

The Bureau of the Census publishes mortality statistics according to the titles of the International List of Causes of Death. This list has been accepted internationally for over forty years. It is modified at each decennial revision by means of an international conference, the next meeting of which will be in the fall of this year. This revision is necessary in order to realine the list with advances in the science of medicine.

Two distinctly different points of view are in conflict with each other in the revision of this list. From the standpoint of physicians on the frontier of modern medicine, the essential desire is to change the titles so as to produce statistics which meet the requirements introduced into the picture of death by the new and advanced knowledge of medicine. Each modification of the list made with the purpose of meeting the demand for change disturbs the