All individuals living in the demographic surveillance area were enumerated during the 2008 re-census. After the re-census, update has been done regularly every 6 months. During each round, fieldworkers register new family members and households, pregnancy observation and outcome, death, in and out migrants, new marriage, and any individuals missed in the baseline data. Periodic visits to registered households, allows data collected in one round to be checked and corrected in successive rounds. Interviews are administered to the heads of the household but in the absence of the head, the next elder family member is interviewed. This is only done after repeated trial of getting the head.
While the regular update round is every six months, deaths that occur in the surveillance site are reported immediately to the fieldworkers by the local guides. After the mourning period, usually 45 days, the trained fieldworkers administer the WHO standard Verbal Autopsy (VA) questionnaire to the close relative of the deceased to get information on the possible cause(s) of death. Three VA questionnaires are prepared for the age groups 0-28 days, 29 days to 12 years, and greater than 12 years. To assign cause(s) of death, the VA data collected by data collectors is given to physicians who have got training on VA. These physicians independently assign causes of death using the standard International Classification of Diseases (ICD-10).
The graphic representation of the data collection procedure can be shown in the following figure below:
HH = Household