One Simple Guideline That Could Reduce America’s High Infant Mortality Rate – PBS (click to see original article)
This article contains an interview with Premier healthcare alliance’s CEO Susan DeVore. She discussed how hospitals can help lower the infant mortality rate and what some challenges are that remain. The United States ranks somewhere around 27th worldwide in infant mortality. A country like the U.S. with all its advanced technology — the nation that spends more each year on health care than any developed economy on earth — should be ranked in the top five for countries with the lowest infant mortality rates. But such is not the case.
The Centers for Disease Control recently issued a report that shows U.S. numbers in this area improving. However, health policy experts agree the country still has much work to do. And surprisingly, one of the areas that needs more attention is planned childbirth. Often that decision is not made for medical reasons, but for matters of convenience.
One of the biggest problems is pre-term birth, when people have their babies prior to 37 weeks or prior to 39 weeks. It is often by choice. A potential solution is to educate and train health systems to implement policies around that and really reduce the number of babies being delivered before 39 weeks.