Causes of Death in Turkey in Terms of Health Institutions: Epidemiologic Examination
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Causes of deaths (CoD) in Turkey has a long historical period in the compilation of death processes, beginning from 1931 until today. Despite various efforts in the process, a comprehensive and qualitative system could be established after 2009, by the Ministry of Health (MoH) and the Turkish Statistical Institute (TurkStat). The system has been evolved to an electronic and dynamic system in 2013, by the integration of the Central Civil Registration System (MERNİS) to the process, which is called Death Notification System (DNS). In this study, the historical background of the causes of deaths in Turkey until 2009 has been reviewed accompanying the epidemiologic and demographic transition history in the world and in Turkey. Furthermore, the new system on causes of deaths after 2009 has been examined by the health institutions which are responsible for issuing death certificates. To do this, basic characteristics such as sex, age, usual residence and cause of death of the deceased person were analysed by institutions which notify the death event. Also, the causes of death considered from the epidemiologic viewpoint were discriminated such infectious and non-infectious diseases, in the analysis. With the impact of developing health systems and the improvement of the average life expectancy in the world, we are faced with the decreasing effect of infectious diseases and the fact of ageing. In a similar pattern, the diseases causing to deaths in Turkey have been changed towards the non-communicable forms by the 2000s. But when the recent era of epidemiological transition of Turkey was examined, a newly emerging effect of communicable diseases was determined. Particularly, private hospitals and university hospitals are in the foreground, notifying infectious diseases compared to the others. The effect of infectious diseases, especially on children and women, is more apparent. In addition, due to the recent migration movements in our region, it is considered that the infectious diseases constitute a greater risk particularly in the eastern regions near the border.