Infant mortality is the rate at which babies die within their first year of life. Infant mortality is a measure that can be used to gauge the trends in women and child health, the quality and availability of medical care, public health practices, and the economy overall.
Ohio lags the nation in our infant mortality rates. In 2010, Ohio had the 4th highest infant mortality rate in the nation, the 14th highest rate for White infants and the 2nd highest rate for black infants. While infant mortality rates have declined 12% nationally between 2005 and 2011, Ohio’s infant mortality rate has remained relatively stagnant.
Within the state of Ohio there are health disparities in infant mortality rates. Black infants are twice as likely to die in Ohio during their first year of life compared to white infants—2012 rates of infant mortality were 13.98 per 1,000 live births among black infants and 6.37 per 1,000 live births among white infants.