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Infant mortality rate in Detroit drops from 2018 to 2019

May 5, 2021 GMT

DETROIT (AP) — Infant mortality in Detroit dropped between 2018 and 2019, officials said.

Data from Michigan’s Department of Health and Human Services shows there were 11 deaths for every 1,000 live births in 2019 compared to 16.7 deaths for the same number of live births the year before.

The drop was announced Wednesday by Mayor Mike Duggan and Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, Michigan’s chief medical executive.

In 1992, Detroit’s overall rate was 21.4.

The mortality rate for Black babies in Detroit also decreased from nearly 19 per 1,000 live births in 2018 to 12.3 the following year, Duggan’s office said. The rate for white babies was 9.7 in 2019 and 6.4 in 2018.

Statewide, the infant mortality rate for all babies in 2019 was 6.4 per every 1,000 live births, according to data from the Maternal and Child Health Epidemiology Section of Michigan’s Health and Human Services department.

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In 2018, the state’s rate was 6.6.

Infant mortality is considered the death of an infant before reaching the age of one, according to state health officials.

Causes of infant mortality include birth defects, preterm birth, maternal pregnancy complications, Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, and injuries like suffocation.

Duggan and Khaldun credited a number of organizations and programs with helping to drop the overall rate in Detroit.

“We know these premature births are preventable by good prenatal care,” Duggan said.