231235 Crisis in the Crib: Saving our nation's babies

Tuesday, November 9, 2010 : 5:35 PM - 5:45 PM

Matilde Gonzalez-Flores, MPH , Office of Minority Health Resource Center, Rockville, MD
Isabel Estrada-Portales, MS , Office of Minority Health Resource Center, Rockville, MD
The infant mortality rate of a nation is widely considered the barometer by which the health of its entire population is gauged. As we explore the theme of social justice in this year's APHA annual meeting we must ask ourselves why is it that amongst industrialized nations the United States ranks 29th in the world for infant mortality. A joint effort of the Office of Minority Health (OMH) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and producer Tonya Lewis Lee, the documentary, Crisis in the Crib: Saving our nation's babies sheds light on the high rates of infant mortality in the U.S. and the significant disparities affecting minority populations. In fact, African American infant mortality rates are more than twice the rate for the U.S. population as a whole. Tonya Lewis Lee, a best-selling author and award-winning TV producer, is the national campaign spokesperson for the OMH A Healthy Baby Begins with You infant mortality awareness campaign. Lewis Lee began filming for Crisis in the Crib in Memphis, Tennessee—home to one of the nation's highest African American infant mortality rates and centered on the Higher Knowledge, Higher Service- First College to Community Health Outreach Week. The video documents the outreach efforts of the OMH Preconception Peer Educators (PPE) on their campus and in the community as they canvass neighborhoods and visit churches and schools to raise awareness about infant mortality and preconception health. Along the way, the PPE learn about the grief the people of Memphis have endured as a result of having babies born too soon and too small. The PPE also witness the power and potential of youth, their work and the community's determination to change these grim statistics and give every baby a chance to thrive.

Learning Areas:
Advocacy for health and health education
Communication and informatics
Diversity and culture
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
1. Explain current national and state trends in infant mortality rates and the role of preconception health and care in eliminating infant mortality disparities 2. Describe the Preconception Peer Educator program strategies to reach the college-aged African American population with essential preconception health and care messages 3. Discuss the role of local, state and federal partnerships for promoting preconception health

Keywords: Infant Mortality, African American

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I developed the educational curriculum for the Office of Minority Health's Preconception Peer Educators program under the A Healthy Baby Begins with You infant mortality awareness campaign which is the basis for the documentary “Crisis in the Crib: Saving Our nation’s babies".
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.