Texas Child Fatality Review

Welcome to the Texas Child Fatality Review Team (CFRT) website.

About Texas Child Fatality Review

In 1995, Texas law makers formed the State Child Fatality Review Team (SCFRT) Committee. Counties could form local and regional Child Fatality Review Teams (CFRTs) as well. Senate Bill 6, page 61 amended sections of the Family Code Chapter 264 Subchapter F. The law moved support and coordination of CFRTs from the Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) to the Department of State Health Services (DSHS).    

The Injury Prevention Unit facilitates the SCFRT Committee. The committee works with local CFRTs to provide injury prevention recommendations to:

  • Modify current legislation; 
  • Increase public education; and
  • Determine feasibility of strengthening systems.  

This committee reports child fatality data collected by local CFRTs. The committee submits CFRT data and recommendations to the Texas Legislature. The report is due no later than April 1 of each even-numbered year. The committee also submits recommendations to the DFPS child safety review subcommittee.

State Child Fatality Review Team Committee

The State Child Fatality Review Team (SCFRT) Committee is a group of experts (PDF) throughout Texas. They want to reduce the number of preventable child deaths. The committee has four goals:

  • Understand the causes and incidences of child death in Texas;
  • Identify procedures to reduce the number of preventable child deaths;
  • Promote public awareness; and
  • Recommend changes in law, policy, and practice. These changes will reduce the number of preventable child deaths.  

For more information, please visit the SCFRT website.

Child Fatality Review Teams  

Local Child Fatality Review Teams (CFRTs) are working groups of community partners. They review child deaths on a local level from a public health perspective. Reviewing a child’s death helps identify strategies to decrease preventable child deaths. Local CFRTs:

  • Provide help, direction, and coordination to investigations of child deaths;
  • Promote collaboration among agencies involved in responding to child fatalities;
  • Try to understand the causes and incidence of child deaths in their county or counties;
  • Recommend changes to policy or procedures that will reduce preventable deaths; and,
  • Suggest changes to law, policy, or practice to the SCFRT.

Texas CFRTs vary in size and the number of counties for which they review child deaths. Some teams review deaths for only one county. Regional teams review deaths for two or more counties. The largest number of counties a single Texas team covers is 26.

Texas seeks to have CFRTs in all parts of Texas. Contact cfrt@dshs.texas.gov to learn more about child fatality review efforts in your area.

CFRT Resources

National Center for Fatality Review & Prevention

The National Center for Fatality Review and Prevention (National Center) is the technical support and data center for child fatality. They assist child death review and fetal and infant mortality review programs throughout the U.S.  

The National Center provides web-based training modules on fatality review. Training modules focus on process work such as:

  • Fetal and Infant Mortality Review 101;
  • Child Death Review 101; and
  • Conducting maternal interviews.     

Others cover best practices such as: 

  • Facilitating successful fatality review meetings; 
  • Improving child fatality review data quality; and
  • Writing recommendations.

The National Center also hosts webinars and provides written materials to assist CFRTs.    

National Center Resources

Sleep-Related Infant Deaths

Every year in the U.S., some 3,400 babies die while sleeping. Many lose their lives to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), which has no clear cause. Others manage to twist or turn themselves into a position that narrows their airways. Some babies suffocate when pillows or blankets block their mouths or noses. The American Academy of Pediatrics released Sleep-Related Infant Deaths: Updated 2022 Recommendations for Reducing Infant Deaths in the Sleep Environment and My baby has a stuffy nose. How can I help them sleep safely? Please review these resources and share these important recommendations among your networks.

Other Resources


Contact Us

Texas Department of State Health Services
Injury Prevention Unit
PO Box 149347, Mail Code 1922
Austin, TX 78714-9347
(512) 776-7373: Phone
(512) 458-7658: Fax

The Texas Department of State Health Services does not endorse external links to other websites. These links are informational and may not be accessible to persons with disabilities.