Factors that Contribute to Infant Mortality

Infant mortality is “widely used as a measure of population health and the quality of health care” (AMCHP, n.d.). Infant mortality rate is not only seen as a measure of infant death risk, but also as a crude indicator of community health status, socioeconomic status, and availability of quality health services and medical technology (AMCHP, n.d.).

  • Infant mortality means the death of an infant before their first birthday. Infant mortality rate (IMR) is presented as the number of infant deaths per 1,000 live births, averaged over 2013-2015.
  • Oklahoma County infant mortality rate during 2013-2015 was 7.0, representing an 8 percent decline from 7.6 in 2010-2012.
  • Significant differences in infant mortality rate by race and ethnicity are apparent; the mortality rate for African American infants more than doubles that of Caucasian infants.


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Association of Child Health Programs (AMCHP), Child Trends Databank (2015), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 28 Sept, 2016, Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) 2015, Lu, M. et al. (2010). Closing the Black-White Gap in Birth Outcomes: A life-course approach. Ethnicity and Disease, 20(1suppl 2):S262-276