Indicator Report - Birth Defects: Infant Mortality
Why Is This Important?Compared to other newborns, infants with birth defects are at a much greater risk of dying early in life. Because of this, birth defects are a major driver of overall infant mortality rates. Currently, birth defects are the leading cause of infant mortality in the United States and other developed countries.
Most children who die due to birth defects do so early in life, many before their first month and most before their first year of life. Thus, infant mortality due to birth defects is a reasonable and convenient measure of deaths due to birth defects and of the effectiveness of prevention and treatment.
Preventing birth defects is a crucial and necessary step to improving children's survival and health. Preventing birth defects requires a combination of surveillance, to track and assess these conditions; research, to find their causes; and direct prevention services, to ensure that all women and their providers know of effective primary prevention already available, such as periconceptional folic acid to prevent neural tube defects (see Indicator Report on neural tube defects).
Tracking birth defect patterns among Utah women is necessary to improve our efforts to understand the impact of birth defect related infant mortality and to decrease the number of infants that die during their first year of life.
It is also important that families have the resources to help them in the difficult times following the tragic loss of their child with birth defects. The Utah Birth Defect Network (UBDN) is engaged in activities to help prevent birth defects through surveillance and services, as well as to provide resource information to families who have experienced the death of a baby and their providers.
Data NotesHispanic persons may be of any race.
Data SourcesUtah Birth Defect Network.
DefinitionInfant mortality related to birth defects in live born infants of Utah residents that died within the first year of life.
How We Calculated the Rates
Page Content Updated On 11/15/2013, Published on 11/15/2013