State Spotlight - New Mexico
updated: February 2014
Paula M. Bauch
Child Fatality Review Coordinator
University of New Mexico
Department of Emergency Medicine
1 University of New Mexico
Albuquerque, NM 87131-0001
Phone: (505) 925-4329
Fax: (505) 476-7810
The New Mexico Child Fatality Review was established in 1998
by regulation. The administration and coordination for the team is a program of the New Mexico Department of Health.
New Mexico has state level review teams, with membership representing various professional disciplines.
The New Mexico Child Fatality Review (NMCFR) is comprised of four panels or teams. These include child abuse and neglect; suicide; transportation; and other injuries plus SUIDS. Each panel is made up of volunteers who meet monthly to review cases and discuss strategies for preventing deaths. From these reviews, recommendations for prevention are made. Legislation requires the team to look at ways to reduce future deaths by identification of risk factors, determine risk reduction and/or system failures and identify such information to policy makers, providers, communities and the public.
The NMCFR reviews all New Mexico deaths except disease in children from birth though the age of 17, depending on the cause: deaths that occur on tribal land or reservations are not reviewed by the state CFR. At this time, homicide, natural (with the exception of SIDS) or premature neonatal deaths are not reviewed. All deaths are identified through the Office of the Medical Investigator. This information is sent to the NMCFR coordinator who collects all case information and notifies the appropriate panel that the case is ready for review.
The purpose of the New Mexico Child Fatality Review is prevention, especially improving coordination among agencies that engage young families.
NMCFR is using the Child Death Review Case Reporting System in conjunction with the web-based database developed by the National Center for Child Death Review.
New Mexico will soon be publishing the 2013 Annual Report.
NMCFR findings have influenced policy changes and prevention initiatives.
New Mexico has CFR Meeting protocols in place.
CFR Training is ongoing for established panel members. New panel members receive individual training and mentoring. The Office of the Medical Investigator conducts training in death scene investigation.