In this Section
258547 Community Perceptions Related to Infant Mortality: A Healthy Moms-Healthy Babies-Healthy Community Initiative
Wednesday, October 31, 2012
Objective: The Healthy Moms—Healthy Babies—Healthy Community Initiative seeks to engage the community to reduce infant mortality in Fort Worth, Texas, using a Life Course Perspective. To carry out this mission, we conducted focus groups to assess the awareness and understanding of the extent of infant mortality among community residents in areas having the highest infant mortality.
Methods: Eight focus groups were conducted in 2011, five with women only, one with men only, one with staff of youth-serving organizations, and one with individuals working in education. The focus groups were designed and implemented using a community-based participatory approach in collaboration with a community Oversight Board.
Results: Eighty-one people participated in the focus groups. Four themes emerged: 1) challenges to accessing community resources such as transportation, healthy food, and employment; 2) institutional and system-level barriers related to racism (e.g., the inability to obtain equitable healthcare, education, and banking); 3) lack of support in women's lives, including partners, family, peers, employers, and clergy; and 4) stress related to substandard living and working environments. The results of the focus groups were disseminated at a community forum in which focus group participants and community stakeholders provided reaction and context.
Conclusion: These results were used to develop a strategic plan as the foundation for identifying, creating, and implementing steps that will reduce infant mortality rates in the areas of Fort Worth with the highest rates. The Initiative is an example of a robust academic-community partnership to address infant mortality using a Life Course Perspective.
Learning Areas:Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Keywords: Infant Mortality, Community Participation
Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Kathryn Cardarelli, PhD MPH is the UNT Health Science Center Director for the Center for Community Health and Associate Professor of Epidemiology in the School of Public Health. I have been the principal or co-principal of federally funded grants as well as three current Cancer Prevention Institute of Texas (CPRIT) grants. Currently my work is centered around infant mortality, HPV, breast cancer, and the sexual exploitation of youth.
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.