Death: going live after the next election

Relax; this is not about the forthcoming zombie apocalypse.  A note from the Public Health Directorate to the Healthcare Improvement Scotland explains:

I am writing to confirm death certification implementation will continue to move forward but with a new go live date.  Given the proximity of the current planned ‘go live’ date for the new scrutiny system to the UK General Election in early May next year, we have considered it would be best to move the ‘go live’ date by a few weeks until after the Election. Therefore, following discussion with key stakeholder groups we have agreed that the new ‘go live’ date will be 13 May 2015.

I’ve done a little spadework, so to speak, to find out how going live became a live issue for people working with the dead.  This is what I’ve dug up.  I think the culprits may be American (they do things differently there).     In Arkansas, for example, the Project Schedule for Electronic Death Registration began in 2009, and had seven stages:

  • Kickoff
  • Confirmation of Requirements (Gap Analysis)
  • Design and confirmation
  • User Acceptance Testing
  • Pilot
  • Go-Live at Pilot Location
  • Statewide Roll-out

It’s understandable, perhaps, that public administrators lapse on occasion into a little jargon – it’s infectious.  They really ought to be aware, though, that in any contemporary public service, whatever they do is liable to be read by a general public, and it ought to be written with that audience in mind.

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