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Apr 12, 2022

Reviewing Process Using Belize Health Information System

The process includes the revision of death certificates that have been entered into the Belize Health Information System, by doctors and health professionals and includes laboratory results, imaging studies, and clinical notes. Epidemiologist Doctor Russell Manzanero says that the ministry is in no way hiding the numbers. He speaks of the challenges with death certificates from private health institutions.


Dr. Russell Manzanero

Dr. Russell Manzanero, Epidemiologist, Ministry of Health & Wellness

“Some of the death certificates that we are getting back though is from the private sector and we would not have had a record of those. And this is where we rely on the diagnosis made on that death certificate. Sometimes, we might not be aware of them because of the length of time it takes to get back those death certificates to our unit and that is the reason why sometimes we have to revise those. I do know that you are mentioning an excess in the mortality that is not being recorded. Mind you, we are seeing these deaths as it is, upon the medical community when they are seeing their patients, this is what they believe they are experiencing. I think another way that we can look at it is to see the number of deaths we’ve had over time. And that is one of the ways that we can look at it; that if over time we are seeing that these numbers are perhaps in excess of other years, then there might be some underlying there that these deaths were contributing from COVID. I know that you are trying to, when you are talking about deaths that are being hidden or not. We are not in that. Our unit here is there to show the numbers and to show where it is.”

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