National Violent Death Reporting System (NVDRS)

Maintained/created by: Centers for Disease Control
Geographic unit of data: U.S. state, U.S. national

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Users are able to search for data, article, and abstracts related to violent death and injury including but not limited to child maltreatment, intimate partner homicides, other homicides, and suicides. In 2002, the CDC received funding to create NVDRS. It is a state-based surveillance system that collects facts from different sources about the same incident. The information—from death certificates, police reports, and coroner or medical examiner reports—is pooled into a useable, anonymous database. As NVDRS data become available, state and local violence prevention practitioners use it to guide their prevention programs, policies, and practices. Before CDC established NVDRS, frontline investigators, including homicide detectives, coroners, crime lab investigators and medical examiners, collected valuable information about violent deaths. But they did not combine the information into one comprehensive reporting system that provided the complete picture. Instead, data remained in pieces, across a variety of different systems. To answer the questions surrounding violent deaths, NVDRS: links records to describe in detail the circumstances that may contribute to a violent death; identifies violent deaths occurring in the same incident to help describe the circumstances of multiple homicides or homicide–suicides; provides timely preliminary information on violent deaths; and better characterizes the relationship of the victim to the suspect.

Data Notes

Data is available for use through the Web-based Injury Statistics Query and Reporting System (WISQARS). Users are able to select from a variety of reporting options including type statistics reported, type of injury, type of victim, type of perpetrator and mechanism of injury. Data is currently available from 18 states. Data is available from 2003-2008. Tables are created using SAS output.