Everyone deserves to experience a healthy pregnancy and birth and ultimately have and care for a healthy baby. Unfortunately, not all birthing people have this experience. This month is Pregnancy & Infant Loss Awareness Month, and we wanted to raise awareness around the infant mortality rate (IMR) in the United States.
The causes of infant death. Infant mortality is the death of a child before their first birthday, and the infant mortality rate (IMR) is the number of deaths per 1,000 infants born. According to the CDC, “the five leading causes of infant mortality in the United States in 2020 were birth defects, preterm birth and low birth weight, sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), injuries, and pregnancy complications.”
Data shows that in Illinois and at the national level, there are racial and ethnic disparities regarding the infant mortality rate. The Illinois Department of Public Health reports that the 2019 infant mortality rate among non-Hispanic Black infants was nearly three times higher than the infant mortality rate among non-Hispanic white infants. Chicago has seen similar numbers since 2010, with the highest infant mortality rates clustered in the south and west sides. These statistics are significant because they show the disparities in infant death and the effects these disparities have on Black communities and overall maternal and infant care.
EverThrive IL creates community-centered education tools/resources and works with community partners to increase positive birth outcomes. We’ve compiled a list of EverThrive IL and community partner resources to support birthing people to ensure they have the information they need to stay healthy before, during, and after their baby is born. We invite social service/health providers and community organizations to share these resources with the communities they serve.
Digital Resources for Birthing People
Chicago Collaborative for Maternal Health (CCMH)
Healthy Choices, Healthy Futures
The Gathering Digital Resource
Mental Health Resources for Grieving Parents and Families
Never Forgotten: Miscarriage & Infant Loss Support Group
EverThrive IL Partnerships