Archive for Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Recommendations made to reduce infant mortality in Kansas

February 3, 2010, 1:32 p.m. Updated February 3, 2010, 5:16 p.m.


— Health officials Wednesday issued recommendations aimed at reducing Kansas’ infant mortality rate, which is 20 percent higher than the national rate.

The recommendations include expanded data gathering and research; increased public awareness; and improvements in access to early prenatal care.

In 2007, the infant mortality rate in Kansas was 7.9 deaths per 1,000 live births, according to the Kansas Blue Ribbon Panel on Infant Mortality.

Among African-American infants in Kansas, the mortality rate was twice the rate of whites and was the 47th highest in the nation. African-American infants represent 7 percent of births in Kansas and 17 percent of deaths.

“In order to improve Kansas’ infant mortality rate, the first step is to have a better understanding of what factors are contributing to this rate,” said Dr. Dennis Cooley, chair of the blue ribbon panel and president of the Kansas chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics.

Thirty years ago, Kansas’ infant mortality rate compared favorably with that of other states, the panel reported. But in recent years, Kansas’ rate has stagnated while the rest of the country’s rate declined. Kansas also has a higher rate than neighboring states.

Kansas Action for Children issued a report that said Kansas is missing out on federal funds to lower the infant mortality rate because of a lack of comprehensive data.

Both the organization and blue ribbon panel recommended that the Kansas Department of Health and Environment be given authority to collect and analyze information about infant deaths.

The leading causes of infant deaths in Kansas are congenital anomalies, pre-term birth and low birth weight, Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, and maternal complications of pregnancy. Two-thirds of infant deaths are within the first 28 days of life.


pace 8 years, 2 months ago

Hey if it doesn't directly help a large health corporation I don't think our legislature will be motivated. The high infant mortality rates didn't move them until it looked like they were missing out on fed. $. I am beginning to think the Kansas Legislature is very corrupt.

Shane Garrett 8 years, 2 months ago

I suggest a baby tax. If someone has a baby they must pay a tax. That would cover the cost of KDHE data collection so that Kansas could then apply for federal grants, which of course is just tax money redistributed.

cozy 8 years, 2 months ago

I had no idea the rates were that much higher. Maybe I should move to Colorado or somewhere else for the next one so that I may actually hear my baby cry..

Hop2It 8 years, 2 months ago

What will it cost? If it doesn't cost, why aren't we doing it already?

townie42 8 years, 2 months ago

so... what were the actual causes again? and are they different in Kansas from other states? or are we just worse at dealing with them?

surely every state has low birth weights, SIDS, & maternal complications... right? there has to be something else...

sad_lawrencian 8 years, 2 months ago

A great way to reduce infant mortality in Kansas is for people to stop having babies. :)

Commenting has been disabled for this item.