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Cincinnati Children's Hospital offering free resources to combat infant mortality

September marks National Baby Safety Month
Posted at 8:09 AM, Sep 01, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-01 08:09:45-04

CINCINNATI — September is National Baby Safety Month, and Hamilton County is continuing its fight against infant mortality.

Hamilton County was once among the worst counties in the nation for babies dying before their first birthday. However, several organizations — including Cincinnati Children's Hospital — have spent the past decade turning that trend around.

The infant mortality rate is at a record low, and numbers from Cradle Cincinnati's 2021 annual report showed infant deaths decreased by 13% from 2020.

Cincinnati Children's Hospital is making an effort by supplying free resources for parents, per Patrick Edmunds, program manager of Cincinnati Children's Comprehensive Children's Injury Center (CCIC).

The hospital has a team of several injury prevention specialists that can do home safety visits with on-site equipment installation, make car seat appointments and simply provide information. These are complimentary, no questions asked.

"We try to meet families where they are, talking about the dangers that are out there and really hoping to keep kids safe," Edmunds said.

CCIC has been around for more than a decade, and along with other organizations like Cradle Cincinnati, it has really tried to drill down to the source of infant mortality.

"We tell people we don't want to meet you in the ER," Edmunds said. "We want to meet you in a positive way. We'd rather meet you at a health fair and talk to you there. We want to have positive interactions with families and meet you on your best day, not your worst day."

A major part of improving the odds for those most at-risk is addressing a major racial disparity. In 2021, Black babies were nearly five times more likely to die before their first birthdays than white babies, according to Cradle Cincinnati's report.

Cincinnati Children's believes a key to fixing that problem is making sure everyone has access to resources like cribs and pack-and-plays because household safety is a top priority.

You can access Cincinnati Children's free resources here.

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