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Local Vital Statistics Support


The Vital Statistics Stakeholder Support Site for local VS offices is divided into four sections:  Guidance, Procedures and Forms, ServiceNow, and Webinars.  General announcements can be found on this main landing page and information applicable to all users of IPHIS/EDRS (such as password resets, new users, and printer settings issues) can be found on the “All IPHIS/EDRS Users” page.  Please use the links at the top of this page to navigate to the other sections. 


New Citrix Environment 3/14/2020

The Bureau of Vital Statistics will be performing updates to our Citrix server environment that hosts IPHIS/EDRS on Saturday, March 14th, 2020.  Please click here for a video presentation on the new environment.  No changes to IPHIS/EDRS will be made as a result of this server update.  Local Vital Statistics staff in need of quick information on logging in to the new Citrix environment after 3/14 should refer to one of our tipsheets for our recommended web browsers:  


Local Vital Statistics Training for New Staff

Our short training modules for local health district staff who are new to Vital Statistics is now available in the ServiceNow Knowledge Base.  There are seven modules with associated comprehension quizzes available for new staff and anyone who wants a quick refresher course on birth and death record creation/registration, issuance, and updates.  We encourage all local VS offices to include these training materials as part of their onboarding process.  Instructions on accessing the Knowledge Base can be found on the “ServiceNow” tab.   



Quick Resources for Local VS 

The Bureau of Vital Statistics has a few quick reference tools that can be printed out and made available to staff working with the public in local Vital Statistics offices:    


Local Vital Statistics Manual 2018 Edition

The Local Vital Statistics Manual has been updated to include 2018 changes, and can be accessed through the ServiceNow Knowledge Base.  Please download a copy for your office to use as a reference for staff.  Instructions on accessing the Knowledge Base can be found on the ServiceNow tab.   




Forms and Procedures


This page of the Local Vital Statistics section of the Stakeholder Support Site contains links to the most recent versions of VS procedures and forms. 



Local Vital Statistics Manual

The Bureau of Vital Statistics has an updated 2018 version of our comprehensive Local VS Manual available.  It can be downloaded through the Knowledge Base in ServiceNow (see the ServiceNow tab above for access instructions) or requested via an email to the VS.Helpdesk@odh.ohio.gov account.  This manual includes updated guides to IPHIS/EDRS and all procedures discussed on this page of the Support Site. 



Affidavits – Birth and Death

The birth affidavit form here is a fillable pdf form for local offices to assist their customers.  For a guide to the birth affidavit document including what can and cannot be corrected via affidavit, see the VS Helpdesk Knowledge Base inside ServiceNow.  Completed affidavits can be sent with a fax cover sheet (found here) to VS.Corrections@odh.ohio.gov.  


Affidavits for death records can be created in EDRS by local registrars and funeral homes.  For a guide to creating a death record affidavit click here.  If the death record your customer wishes to correct is not in your jurisdiction, or is from prior to 2007, click here for a fillable form which you can print.  The same manual affidavit form can be used to correct fetal death records. 



Home Births

Individuals born in the State of Ohio outside a birthing facility should have their birth registered as soon as possible through their local VS office.  Local VS staff should work with the parents to complete the Birth Parents Worksheet along with the verification form for out of institution births.  Once the birth record has been entered into IPHIS, completed home birth packets can be submitted via email to VS.Registration@odh.ohio.gov or via fax to 614-564-2514 using the Request for Approval form.  All necessary forms can be accessed through the Knowledge Base.  



Fetal Death Records

Filing Reports of Fetal Death still involves paper certificates.  For detailed information about the Report of Fetal Death form, including the distinction between losses of over and under 20 weeks gestational age, please check the VS Helpdesk Knowledge Base in ServiceNow.



Forms Requests

Local health departments in need of extra copies of the paper forms used by the Bureau of Vital Statistics may use the forms request document here. The brown paper Acknowledgement of Paternity forms must still be ordered directly from the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services whose website may be found here.  




This section of the Vital Statistics Stakeholder Support Site contains guidance for local Vital Statistics offices on topics not formally covered by ODH procedures and not explicitly related to the process of filing and registering vital records through IPHIS/EDRS. 

Changes in Local Vital Statistics Staff

When a local registrar, deputy registrar, or sub-registrar changes local VS offices should complete the Change of Registrar Appointment Request form linked here and send it to the VS Helpdesk via email: VS.Helpdesk@odh.ohio.gov.  Registrars and local VS administrators can also submit an email to the VS Helpdesk when local VS staff need new access roles in IPHIS (such as statewide issuance, or cause of death entry).  These emails should contain the name of the user, their email address, phone number, and the IPHIS/EDRS access roles that are needed.  
Local health district staff who are new to Vital Statistics should review the Local VS Manual and take the Intro to Vital Statistics, Birth, and Death training modules available as videos and quizzes in the ServiceNow Knowledge Base before beginning their work in VS.  More training modules focused on registrar and deputy registrar responsibilities will be released in the future.   

Security Paper

The security paper order for 2019 has been delivered.  If you are transferring security paper between local offices you will need to complete the Security Paper Transfer form and submit it to VS.Issuance@odh.ohio.gov

Equipment Salvage

Any office that is replacing ODH-purchased equipment (e.g., their HP LaserJet P2055 locking printer) should ensure that the equipment is sent back to ODH Vital Statistics for salvaging.  Hardware can be packed into any available box and labeled for shipment using the UPS CampusShip instructions in the paragraph below.  A Surplus Property Turn In Document for LHDs should accompany each shipment of salvaged equipment.  If you are replacing your PCs please refer to this list of computer requirements for the replacement systems. 

UPS Shipping for Local Offices

Each week, local offices should send any records filed during the previous week to ODH via their regularly scheduled UPS pickup.  Please do not delay the shipping of any filed records to our office as this prevents them from being fully registered and we are all under increasingly tight deadlines to register our records.  Answers to most questions about these regular shipments and the guidelines for mailing certificates can be found in the VS Helpdesk Knowledge Base in ServiceNow, along with detailed instructions on printing shipping labels.



The Vital Statistics Helpdesk uses ServiceNow to receive and track requests for assistance from our partners in birth facilities, funeral homes, doctor’s offices, and local vital statistics offices.  The ServiceNow Knowledge Base is also where local Vital Statistics offices can find all the forms, guides, and training materials ODH/VS makes available for download.  This page has some tips for making the best possible use of ServiceNow so we can respond to your requests effectively. 


ServiceNow Guide

Registrars, deputy registrars, and clerks who are new to Vital Statistics, unfamiliar with ServiceNow, or in need of a refresher on how the system works, should start with this guide.  You can always request your username and password via an email to VS.Helpdesk@odh.ohio.gov

Knowledge Base 

The ServiceNow VS Helpdesk Knowledge Base serves as a secure reference point for ServiceNow users to access resources from the Vital Statistics Helpdesk team.  The Local VS Manual and other documents that the VS Helpdesk needs to securely share with our partners at local VS offices will be posted in the VS Helpdesk Knowledge Base.  For information on accessing the Knowledge Base please see the updated user guide available here

When to Use ServiceNow

ServiceNow should be used to request assistance from the VS Helpdesk for the following categories: 

  • Birth Certificate Abstract Errors:  The most common use of ServiceNow is to request corrections be made to a birth record in IPHIS so an abstract can be issued with correct information.  This includes typos made when converting the original image to an electronic record, corrections to the footnote on the record, removal of the “deceased” watermark for individuals who are not dead, and checking the mother’s last name on older birth records with no separate fields for mother’s maiden and current last names.  Please note:  the Helpdesk will only make corrections to bring the abstract in IPHIS into agreement with the original birth certificate image.  Changes to the original birth certificate information should be made through an affidavit or court order, as appropriate. 
  • Death Certificate Image Requests:  Registered death records in EDRS without the image of the death certificate attached can be fixed via ServiceNow request.  All requests for death record images should be printed from the .pdf file that will be attached to the closed ServiceNow ticket.  Please only enter one SFN for one death record per request.
  • User Account Change:  For local VS offices adding staff, adding roles to current staff, or notifying the Helpdesk of staff leaving their offices.  See the All IPHIS/EDRS Users page or the Local Vital Statistics Main Page on this site for the forms you will need to attach to your ServiceNow request. 
  • Password Reset:  The VS Helpdesk can reset your password for the ODH Application Gateway or for IPHIS/EDRS. 
  • Extract Issue:  Many local VS offices take advantage of the “Reports” menu in IPHIS/EDRS to generate monthly or weekly reports of the vital records activity in their jurisdictions.  If you are having difficulty creating, saving, or understanding those reports, use this category for your ServiceNow request. 
  • Policy/Procedure/Business:  Questions about VS procedures like “Can I issue a book copy of a birth record with a legal name change attached?” (the answer is no), about general policy questions, or about business concerns like quarterly billing questions should be given this category.  
  • Affidavit Issue:  Please only use this category if you are unable to reach the Special Registration department (at VS.Corrections@odh.ohio.gov) with your emailed birth affidavit, you are having an issue generating a death affidavit in EDRS, or you have a request to correct a record with an affidavit present.  Regular birth affidavits should be submitted with a cover sheet to VS.Corrections@odh.ohio.gov - see the Local Vital Statistics Procedures and Training page for more details on our affidavit process. 
  • Connectivity Issue:  If you are receiving time-out error messages, or error messages regarding your connectivity to IPHIS/EDRS, select this category for your request.  Please keep in mind that password issues or situations where you have no Internet access at all in your office are not considered “connectivity issues” for the Helpdesk to solve.  



Each month, Vital Statistics will hold a webinar for local registrars, deputies, and other interested vital statistics staff.  These presentations may contain reminders about vital statistics business, updated procedures for filing, correcting, and issuing records or information on new programs/initiatives at the state level.  Links to the previous month's presentation can be found below.    For all presentations in 2018-2019, visit the VS Helpdesk Knowledge Base in ServiceNow.