The Michigan Department of Community Health (MDCH) recently announced strategies to reduce and prevent infant deaths. As a result of the 2011 Michigan Call to Action to Reduce and Prevent Infant Mortality Summit, supported in-part by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, MDCH collaborated with local health departments, hospitals, healthcare providers and other stakeholders to develop the Michigan Infant Mortality Reduction Plan. The plan, like the summit, assesses the prevalence, disparities, root causes and contributing factors that have led to poor birth outcomes.
The plan aims to address the heartbreaking fact that for every 1,000 Michigan live births, approximately seven infants die before reaching their first birthday. Within the African American community, the statistic is far more staggering. African Americans are nearly three times more likely than Whites to die as an infant. Various socio-economic factors contribute to racial disparities in infant mortality including inadequate prenatal care, low rates of breastfeeding, high rates of teen pregnancy and delayed immunizations among other causes.
To learn more, read the full report on the Michigan Department of Community Health website.