Board of Medicine Announcement Re: Death Records

August 13, 2019

The Board of Medicine (“Board”) would like to inform physicians and physician assistants that they are required to complete and deliver a death record, duly signed, setting forth the facts required by the department of state, division of vital records administration pursuant to RSA 5-C:63 if you are the attending at the last sickness, prior to a person’s death.  Please see RSA 290:1 below.  For your information, also included below are RSA 5-C:62, I Death Registration Forms and RSA 5-C:64, I, II and III Medical Certification of the Death Record.  To review RSA 290 and RSA 5-C in its entirety, you can visit the following website: http://www.gencourt.state.nh.us/rsa/html/nhtoc.htm

RSA 290:1 Death Records. – Whenever a person shall die, the physician, advanced practice registered nurse, or physician assistant attending at the last sickness shall complete and deliver to the funeral director, next-of-kin as defined in RSA 290:16, IV, or designated agent under RSA 290:17 or shall complete electronically and forward immediately to the division of vital records administration, a death record, duly signed, setting forth, as far as may be, the facts required by the department of state, division of vital records administration pursuant to RSA 5-C:63. The cause or causes of death shall be printed or typed on all records required to be furnished under this section. The funeral director, next-of-kin, or designated agent shall transmit electronically the record of death to the division of vital records administration and the certifying physician, advanced practice registered nurse, or physician assistant shall then electronically complete the cause of death information into the transmitted record. 

RSA 5-C:62 Death Registration Forms. –

I. For every death that occurs in the state of New Hampshire, a death record shall be filed electronically by a funeral director, certifying physician, APRN, physician assistant, next of kin, designated agent, or clerk of the town or city with the division within 36 hours of death and prior to final disposition or entombment. 

RSA 5-C:64 Medical Certification of the Death Record. –
I. Medical certification shall consist of the pronouncement of death and the medical certification of the cause of death.
II. The medical certification on the death record shall be completed by the attending physician, APRN, or physician assistant or certifying physician, APRN, or physician assistant and made available to the funeral director, next of kin, or designated agent as soon as possible but no later than 36 hours after the time of death.
III. Medical certification of the death record shall be the direct responsibility of the attending physician, APRN, or physician assistant unless the death is referred to the medical examiner pursuant to RSA 611-B:12.