Mortality data is a fundamental tool in public health practice, and helps set priorities at the local, state, and national level. Yet American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) people remain poorly represented in this data – often because their race has been “misclassified” on their death certificate.
Racial misclassification of AI/AN people endangers lives. It marginalizes AI/AN communities and leaves the organizations that serve them without sufficient data to make decisions and fund the services they provide.
NCUIH has produced a series of products on this topic with support from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), including:
- Reports describing this issue
- A series of one pagers stakeholders can use to prevent misclassification in mortality data
- A tribal resource guide that funeral directors and community members can use to access burial assistance after a community member’s death