New state plan increases efforts to cut baby deaths

Capital News Service
LANSING — Michigan has one of the nation’s highest infant mortality rates, and experts are trying to change that by teaching future parents and caretakers about healthy pregnancies and proper sleep positions for newborns, supporting women’s health and reducing unwanted pregnancies. The Michigan Department of Community Health released its “Infant Mortality Reduction Plan” in August 2012, said Angela Minicuci, public information officer. “Infants are dying for many reasons and through the plan we have created, we can reduce the risk for death and the eventual number of deaths in infants within Michigan,” said Minicuci. In Michigan, five out of 1,000 Caucasian babies, seven out of every 1,000 Hispanic babies and 14 out of every 1,000 African-American babies die before their first birthday. “With an average of 7.1 deaths per 1,000 live births in 2010, that is seven babies too many,” Minicuci said.