Living to Celebrate That First Birthday

Here’s a sobering statistic. Did you know that approximately 25,000 babies in the U.S. die annually before their first birthday? That’s a rate of 6.1 babies per 1,000 live births.

Just released data, complied by the Annie E. Casey Foundation, reports that Indianapolis ranks near the bottom — 46th in the nation — in infant mortality, with a rate of 9.7. Thankfully, that’s DOWN from the previous year’s rate of 11.3.

Although still higher than most other developed countries, the U.S. infant mortality rate has declined by 34 percent since 1990. Developments in maternal health and advancements in medical technology partially explain the trend. Despite improvements, racial disparities persist, with African-American (11.6 per 1,000 live births) and American Indian (7.6 per 1,000 live births) infants experiencing higher mortality rates when compared to their white counterparts. And the effects of poverty play a significant role too.

Those takeaways ring true especially for our Better Indy Babies and Healthy Families staff, who are all about helping kids get a great start in life.

Check out the report. It’s worth the read. We commend the Casey Foundation for raising awareness about key issues that can lead to better lives for all Hoosier kids. The question is, what can we, here in Indianapolis, do to keep Indy’s infant mortality rate going DOWN and help our community flourish?

There are lots of challenges to consider. Neighborhoods. Safety. Jobs. Health. Resources. Education.

Each of those is a big challenge, but each needs to be addressed in concert so that more families have more opportunities for a higher quality of life. We owe it to our kids to start the conversation.

, , , , , , , ,

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply