Through a contract provided by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS), the Michigan Child Death Review (CDR) Program builds and supports multidisciplinary teams in all 83 Michigan counties. These teams meet regularly to review the circumstances surrounding the death of children in their communities. Team membership is comprised of six mandated members: 

  1. Local Health Department
  2. Medical Examiner
  3. Law Enforcement
  4. Department of Health and Human Services
  5. Prosecutor
  6. Court Representative

Other team members may include: Community Mental Health, Hospitals, Physicians, Education, Emergency Medical Services, and other local Human Service representatives.


To improve our understanding of how and why children die; to demonstrate the need for and to influence policies and programs to improve child health, safety and protection; and to prevent other child deaths.


  1. Accurate identification and uniform reporting of the cause and manner of every child death. 
  2. Improved communication and linkages among agencies and enhanced coordination of efforts. 
  3. Improved agency responses to child deaths in the investigation and delivery of services. 
  4. Design and implementation of cooperative, standardized protocols for the investigation of certain categories of child death. 
  5. Identification of needed changes in legislation, policy, and practices and expanded efforts in child health and safety to prevent child deaths.

Operating Principle:

The death of a child is a community problem. The circumstances involved in most child deaths are too multidimensional for responsibility to rest in any one place.