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Users' guides to the medical literature: how to use an article about mortality in a humanitarian emergency

Mills EJ, Checchi F, Orbinski JJ, Schull MJ, Burkle Jr F, Beyrer C, Cooper C, Hardy C, Singh S, Garfield R, Woodruff BA, Guyatt GH. Confl Health. 2008; 2:9.


The accurate interpretation of mortality surveys in humanitarian crises is useful for both public health responses and security responses. Recent examples suggest that few medical personnel and researchers can accurately interpret the validity of a mortality survey in these settings. Using an example of a mortality survey from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), the authors demonstrate important methodological considerations that readers should keep in mind when reading a mortality survey to determine the validity of the study and the applicability of the findings to their settings.

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Keywords: Public health Emergency medical services

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