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Revista Brasileira de Saúde Materno Infantil
Print version ISSN 1519-3829
FRIAS, Paulo Germano de; SZWARCWALD, Célia Landman and LIRA, Pedro Israel Cabral de. Estimating infant mortality in a decentralized national health system. Rev. Bras. Saude Mater. Infant. [online]. 2011, vol.11, n.4, pp. 463-470. ISSN 1519-3829. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1519-38292011000400013.
The article discusses strategies for estimating infant mortality in the decentralized Brazilian National Health System. It presents direct and indirect techniques for measuring infant mortality, the ways these can be applied and the methodological problems that arise. It further discusses the Ministry of Health's permanent life events information systems and the strategies for evaluating the adequacy of information for the calculation of infant mortality. These issues are set in the context of the new needs that have emerged from the decentralization of the Brazilian health system. Finally, it remarks on the challenge of direct estimation of infant mortality using Ministry of Health information systems in small-scale municipalities and the shortcomings of the data available.
Keywords : Infant mortality; Information systems; Health evaluation; Decentralization; Estimation techniques; Vital statistics; Brazil.