Improving Birth Outcomes Requires Closing the Racial Gap
This article written by the American Journal of Public Health gathered information from many different sources that focused on infant mortality and what it would take to improve the infant mortality rate within the United States. Throughout the article it states that in the year 2013, the maternal and child health community discovered some exciting news that they were not expecting. The news was that from the year “…2000 to 2005, our nations infant mortality rate declined 12%, which means the new mortality rate for infants was 6.05 infant deaths per 1000 live births”; they received the news from the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) (American).
CDC also reported a “…significant decline in the infant mortality rate for African American mothers, as well as a slight narrowing of the long-standing two-to-one gap in rates between African Americans and Whites” (American). Even though the infant mortality rate has declined within the last few years, there is no doubt that there are still persistent and pronounced racial disparities in birth outcomes. “The infant mortality rate for African Americans nationwide is 12.4 infant deaths per 1000 live births, and rates are greater than 7.0 in 15 states, contributing to our unacceptably high national rate” (American). Many may not understand these statistics; so to make it clearer, African American babies die before their first birthday at twice the rate of white babies (American).
“If we are to continue reducing infant mortality rates and improving birth outcomes for all, then we must address this racial gap head on”…