Addressing Infant and Maternal Mortality
We are an interdisciplinary group of medical, nurse practitioner, and public health students collaborating with others in the community to address the racial disparity in infant mortality that exists both in Colorado and nationwide. The infant mortality rate in the U.S. is higher than in most industrialized nations and the gap is widening. African American infants have close to 3 times the mortality rate of non-Hispanic white infants in the first year of life. Previous research suggests that this is not caused by socioeconomic status or education alone.
Our goal is to work with members of the community, including women in the community, non-profit organizations and academic partners to understand factors underlying the racial disparity in infant mortality and to collaborate to address an aspect of this disparity. We do this through key informant interviews, focus groups and most recently forming a Community Advisory Board. We also help facilitate screenings of the documentary "Precious Loss" which depicts details of this disparity in our community.
According to the CDPHE's Vital Statistics Program, African American babies have previously and continue to experience infant mortality at a much higher rate than infants of any other race/ethnicity. Between 2013 and 2015, African American infants died at a rate of 11.98 per 1,000 born in comparison to a rate of 3.99 per 1,000 non-Hispanic White babies.