Wednesday, November 10, 2010

New Federal $$ Will Help CMH Address Infant Mortality

Utah’s Black/African American and Pacific Islander babies suffer the highest rates of infant mortality in the state and a new U.S. Department of Health and Human Services grant will help the Utah Department of Health, (UDOH) Center for Multicultural Health (CMH) understand why.
Pacific Islander infants under 12 months of age had nearly twice the death rate (8.8 deaths/1,000 births) of infants statewide (4.5 deaths/1,000 births). The rate for Black/African American infants was 8.4 deaths/1,000 births. Black/African American infants also had the highest rates of low birth weight (11.4%) and preterm birth (13.0%) of all Utah infants. The state rates were 6.8% and 9.7%, respectively.

The 3-year, $130,000 grant requires that CMH focus on evidence-based interventions addressing no more than three health disparities. In addition to health concerns surrounding births, CMH will also use the funds for research into issues of obesity and health care access among Utah minority groups, two other disparities that turned up amid a comprehensive study of minority health in Utah.

CMH is now seeking expert leaders from public health, health care and community-based organizations to participate on Advisory Boards that will plan and supervise interventions and oversee the selection of community outreach subcontractors.

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