The National Violent Death Reporting System (NVDRS) is a state-based surveillance system that links data from law enforcement, coroners, medical examiners, vital death statistics, and crime laboratories to assist each participating state in designing and implementing tailored prevention and intervention efforts.
NVDRS collects information on violent deaths, unintentional firearm deaths, and undetermined deaths, such as where victims are killed, when they are killed, and what factors appeared to contribute to or precipitate the death. NVDRS is the first system to provide detailed information on circumstances precipitating violent deaths, including brief narratives, to combine information across multiple data sources, to comprehensively describe violent deaths, and to link multiple deaths that are related to one another (e.g., multiple homicides, suicide pacts, and cases of homicide followed by the suicide of the alleged perpetrator).
The purpose of NVDRS is to build the capacity of states to collect and disseminate surveillance data on violent deaths. Such data provide critical insight into the magnitude, trends, and characteristics of violent deaths. NVDRS funding enables states to collect comprehensive and standardized descriptions of violent deaths by integrating information across multiple data sources, including death certificates, coroner reports, medical examiner reports, and law enforcement reports in a standardized manner. The collection of surveillance data on violent deaths is designed to enhance the effectiveness of violence prevention efforts implemented by stakeholders including public health and government agencies, researchers, community organizations, and the public. NVDRS data can be disseminated to stakeholders so that appropriate violence prevention efforts can be identified, selected, targeted, implemented, and evaluated with the ultimate goal of reducing violent deaths.