Infant Mortality Summit Addressed Indiana’s Abysmal Record

November 4, 2013
By

Indiana Health Commissioner Dr. William VanNess said an Infant Mortality Summit helps to focus efforts on reducing unnecessary infant deaths around the state. Photo courtesy ISDH.

Indiana Health Commissioner Dr. William VanNess said an Infant Mortality Summit helps to focus efforts on reducing unnecessary infant deaths around the state. Photo courtesy ISDH.

Indiana has one of the worst infant mortality rates in the nation, according to the latest statistics.

Indiana ranks 45th out of 50 states – with more than seven deaths per every 1,000 babies born.

“We’ve only been below seven once in 113 years,” State Health Commissioner Dr. William VanNess explained. “And it was 6.95 in 2008, that we were barely below seven. So, unfortunately, Indiana has a long history of not being great at infant mortality,” he said.

VanNess said the state is making up to a million dollars in competitive grants available to organizations across Indiana that come up with plans to decrease the unnecessary number of infant deaths in the state.

He added the state must do a better job of educating pregnant women about getting prenatal care and the dangers of smoking.

“Smoking in Indiana is a huge cause of low birth weight or prematurity,” he added. “And 16.6 percent of our moms who are pregnant in Indiana smoke while pregnant.”

An infant mortality summit was held last week, which featured Gov. Mike Pence has a speaker.

The health commissioner said the state had cast a wide net to get organizations from around the Indiana involved in Friday’s infant mortality summit.

“The local health departments, the community health centers, the minority health coalitions, physicians, and of course, the hospitals,” he said, “anybody that thinks they have a part or should have a part in infant mortality, we’ve invited.”

Gov. Mike Pence was a featured speaker at the summit.

 

Listen Live

Upcoming Events

Aug
30
Sat
all-day Milan Community Dollars For Scho... @ Milan Hoosier Links Golf Course
Milan Community Dollars For Scho... @ Milan Hoosier Links Golf Course
Aug 30 all-day
Cost – $50 Per Person or $200 per team. Prizes awardes for 1st & 2nd place, closest to the pin, longest drive and hole-in-one! Many door prizes available and a steak dinner at the conclusion. All proceeds benefit local Scholars. For more info: Call Ray Baurley 812-654-3912
8:00 am 2014 Fire Truck Pull – To benefi... @ Hollywood Casino US 50 Parking Lot
2014 Fire Truck Pull – To benefi... @ Hollywood Casino US 50 Parking Lot
Aug 30 @ 8:00 am
2014 Fire Truck Pull - To benefit Special Olympics Indiana - Ripley Ohio Dearborn Counties @ Hollywood Casino US 50 Parking Lot | Lawrenceburg | Indiana | United States
8AM Registration 9:30AM Opening Ceremonies 9:45AM Kiddie Pull 10AM First Team Pull AWARDS TO FOLLOW   2014 Fire Truck Pull

View Calendar