Infant Mortality In Nashville

I don’t live in Nashville but I saw this morning that Npt has a special on infant mortality that aired last month and are working on a three-year project tackling the issue and the welfare of children’s health in this state. I missed the special unfortunately but there is no doubt this is staggering. Thankfully the online gods and goddesses have an entire special on their website. Rachel has additional stats at Our Bodies Our Blog that are national.

From Npt’s blog …

Infant mortality rates say more about us than simply how many babies will live to see their first birthday. They are an early indicator of what the future holds for the health of our communities.

Tennessee ranks 47th nationally in infant mortality rates, with more than 700 babies dying each year. Only 61% of babies born in Tennessee have received adequate prenatal care and nearly one in ten babies born in Davidson County are of low-birth weight. Single mothers, black mothers and urban residents suffer an even higher infant mortality rates.

This special is, of course, out of Nashville but it impacts the entire state. Aunt B. tackled this last month regarding funding cuts proposed by Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey (she has the linkage.)

This is the promo for the series:

I encourage you to visit Npt to see the whole thing. This is a statewide issue but this lays the groundwork for what we as Tennesseans are dealing with.

1 comment for “Infant Mortality In Nashville

  1. Vvixen
    July 7, 2010 at 11:50 am

    On June 21st, Sen. Brian Kelsey organized an infant mortality summit in Memphis that brought together the disparate programs and agencies addressing infant mortality in our community. Rep. Mark White appeared to be Kelsey’s wing man in this endeavour. (White assumed Kelsey’s seat in the state house when Kelsey took Sen. Paul Stanley’s senate seat.) They quickly steered the discussion to results. They wanted to know numbers of babies saved vs. dollars spent. Yvonne Madlock, the Director of the Memphis & Shelby County Health Department tried to explain to them that infant mortality is a multi-faceted problem that cannot be boiled down to the simple formula of dollars in = babies saved. The health of the growing fetus is inextricably linked with the health of the mother. Maternal health problems such as poor nutrition can affect the fetus even when they occurred many years before the pregnancy. So the only way to impact infant mortality in the future is to maximize the health of young fertile women many years before they even think of becoming pregnant. That requires much more investment and effort than simply working with the women who are pregnant right now. This idea seemed to confound Messrs. White and Kelsey, and they kept trying to bring the discussion back to their simple formula: dollars spent = babies saved.

    The most awesome thing that happened at that meeting was some blistering commentary by Rep. Johnnie Turner. She really took Messrs. Kelsey and White to the proverbial woodshed! Look for more about the infant mortality summit and Johnnie Turner’s awesomeness at I keep meaning to write a complete blog post about this infant mortality dog and pony show, since no one from the media deigned to attend…

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