Source: Health Policy Institute of Ohio
Ohio recorded a slight increase in the number of babies who died before their first birthday in 2016, but saw a promising decrease in the number of sleep-related infant deaths (Source: “Ohio’s Infant-Mortality Rate Edged Up in 2016, but Sleep-Related Deaths Fell,” The Columbus Dispatch, October 6, 2017).
The state averaged 7.4 infant deaths for every 1,000 births last year, up from an infant-mortality rate of 7.2 in 2015, according to a report recently released by the Ohio Department of Health.
In raw numbers, 1,024 Ohio infants died before the age of 1 in 2016, up from 1,005 in 2015. Of the infant deaths last year, 117 were sleep related – a 22% decrease from the previous year.
The increase in the infant mortality rate, despite the investment of millions of dollars in improving birth outcomes, shows “we still have a lot of work to do,” health department director Lance Himes said in a statement released with the report.
Nearly $50 million was included in the current state budget for community programs to tackle the issue, following about $87 million invested in the previous six years.