infant mortality

 

Florida’s infant mortality rate is lower than ever, but that isn't the case in the northeastern part of the state.

Duval County's infant mortality rate is higher than the state average, and a disproportionately high number of babies who die are African-American, according to the Duval County Health Department.

 


Daylina Miller/WUSF News

Inside Crystal Hopkins' Tampa home, she gestures to the large, white curio cabinet that dominates her family's dining room.

She pulls open the double doors and plucks a metallic pink canister off the glass shelf.

Rhea Chiles, the widow of former governor Lawton Chiles, died last November in her home on Anna Maria Island,  at the age of 84. She dedicated her life to improving the lives of children in Florida.

The University of South Florida’s College of Public Health recently held a symposium to honor the legacy of Rhea Chiles' work. This week on Florida Matters (Tuesday, March 1 at 6:30 p.m. and Sunday, March 6 at 7:30 a.m.) we bring you highlights of the discussion.

Six Florida groups have been awarded a total of $4.7 million in federal Healthy Start grants aimed at improved maternal health and lower infant mortality rates.

The Florida grants are part of $65 million that will go  to 87 organizations in 33 states, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced.

The largest Florida grant, $1.4 million, was awarded to REACHUP Inc. of Tampa.

Other state award-winners were:

Florida’s infant mortality rate has dropped to 6 per 1,000 live births, the Associated Press reports. In a separate story, the smoking rate for U.S. adults has dropped to 18 percent, after hovering around 20 percent for years, the AP reports.  

In the developing world, a baby's first day of life is often the most perilous.

Roughly 3 million newborns die each year, the nonprofit Save the Children reported Tuesday. Most of these deaths occur in the first week of life, and more than 1 million babies pass away within 24 hours of being born.

Although the report calls for some big changes in health care systems to prevent newborn deaths, it also says that some simple, inexpensive things could save many lives.