- We can only correct certificates for deaths that happened in Washington State.
Cause of death section of a death certificate
- Items 34-56 or the section below the line.
- Lists information about the cause and manner of death.
- Completed by the medical certifier.
- “Medical certifier”: physician, osteopath, physician's assistant (PAC), advanced registered nurse practitioner (ARNP), health officer, medical examiner, coroner, prosecuting attorney or chiropractor who signed the death certificate.
Detailed information on cause of death corrections
Only the three parties listed below can request a correction to the cause of death:
- The original medical certifier who signed the cause of death section.
- If the original medical certifier is no longer available (over one month), another medical certifier in the same office.
- Rarely, the medical examiner or coroner in the county where the death occurred. Only, if the death required an investigation by the Medical Examiner or Coroner.
Note: If you don't agree with the cause of death listed, you must contact the medical certifier or the medical certifier's office.
For Physicians - Report Cause of Death
Our How to Report Cause of Death webpage provides physician responsibilities, preparation of death certificate guidelines, and forms for reporting Cause of Death.
Email us at VitalRecordsCorrections@doh.wa.gov.