B. I. B. Lindahl
Stockholm University
The World Health Organization has issued international instructions for certification and classification (coding) of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) as cause of death. Central to these instructions is the selection of the underlying cause of death for a public health preventive purpose. This article focuses on two rules for this selection: (1) that a death due to COVID-19 should be counted independently of pre-existing conditions that are suspected of triggering a severe course of COVID-19 and (2) that COVID-19 should not be considered as due to anything else. The article argues that observance of the first rule may not always lead to an optimal selection from a preventive point of view and that in the future the ascertainment of an animal source of the coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) would make it possible to reconceptualize ‘COVID-19‘ and create a zoonotic classification code by means of which a factor of a greater preventive value could be selected than what is currently possible.
Keywords causal attribution  causal multiplicity  cause of death
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DOI 10.1007/s40656-021-00420-8
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On Causal Attribution.B. Ingemar B. Lindahl - 2009 - Dissertation, Stockholm University

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