Another agency is working with the states to develop a model for modern vital records systems.
The National Center for Health Statistics, an arm of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, is leading a re-engineering project that could result in more uniform, effective and affordable systems for states that want to modernize their systems. Some of those systems are still paper-based, said Kenneth Beam of the National Association for Public Health Statistics and Information Systems, and others are based on outdated technology. As much as 85 percent of the processes states use to collect and record births and deaths are the same from one state to the next, Beam said. By developing a prototype based on those processes, the project will help states acquire effective systems and increase standardization nationwide, he said.