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September 07, 2011

{Article} US Ranks low for newborn survival

CNN.Com recently had an interesting article titled US Ranks Low for Newborn Survival. I found it interesting because the statistics are a bit alarming. This pregnancy has revealed a world of "things I didn't know" and just a bit of food for thought. What I found most interesting (pulled straight from the article) are

"In a 20 year analysis of newborn death rates around the world, the study published in PLoS Medicine revealed the number of infants who die  before they are 4 weeks old account for 41% of child deaths worldwide
  • Newborn deaths in the United States ranked 41 out of 45 among industrialized countries, on par with Qatar and Croatia.
  •  More than a half million babies in the United States—1 in every 8—are born premature each year.
  • The United States has seen a 26% reduction in newborn deaths since 1990, but that number is lower than the global average.
  • “We actually found 50 countries, including China, have dropped their newborn death rate by more than 50% in the last 20 years.”
  • Half of the 3.3 million newborn deaths around the world occur in just five countries: Pakistan, China, Democratic Republic of Congo, India, and Nigeria. 
  • But researchers say the newborn death rates in these regions can be decreased by utilizing known interventions: Improving hygiene when a baby is born, breastfeeding and keeping babies warm after birth. "
Read the article for the full study report, but I was shocked to realize that we live in one of the most industrialized and greatest countries on earth and we are ranked so low in newborn deaths. It also made me wonder what could we do here to prevent this?


  1. I've heard this before, and it's definitely quite disturbing. We like to think we're a very progressive nation, but in many ways, we lag behind others.

  2. My husband shared this with me today. Apparently it has been noticed statistically in our town, Omaha NE that c-sections are to blame. They are being used more and more, especially routinely instead of in an emergency as they are indicated. It has also been indicated that licensed midwives are helpful in decreasing infant mortality, and they are illegal here in Nebraska for aiding home births as well.
    I can't help but think that could be a reason. Not all the reasons, but definitely contributing.


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