265288 Improving maternal and child health outcomes in the Mississippi Delta: Impact of the Delta Health Partner's Healthy Start Initiative

Monday, October 29, 2012 : 5:05 PM - 5:20 PM

Sandra Hayes, DrPH , Owens Health and Wellness Center, Tougaloo College, Tougaloo, MS
Leonard Jack Jr., PhD, Msc , Center for Minority Health and Health Disparities Research and Education, College of Pharmacy, Xavier University of Louisiana, New Orleans, LA
Arletha Howard , Delta Health Partners, Tougaloo College, Marks, MS
Felicia Whittington-Kent , Owens Health and Wellness Center, Tougaloo College, Tougaloo, MS
Background: Mississippi has the nation's highest infant mortality rate (IMR) at 10.2 deaths per 1,000 live births. Women and children in Mississippi experience significantly higher perinatal morbidity and mortality rates than other communities. In 2009, the infant mortality rate for whites was 7.0 deaths per 1,000 live births compared to 13.6 for blacks. This racial disparity has persisted throughout the preceding decade. The purpose of the Delta Health Partners (DHP) Healthy Start project is to improve perinatal health outcomes in a seven-county region of Mississippi Delta by strengthening the perinatal health care delivery system and establishing a new model of integrated perinatal health care services. Methods: Excess fetal and infant deaths were calculated from comparison of DHP categorical totals to MS reference group (white mothers who were ≥20 years of age and had ≥13 years of education) categorical values Results: A comparison of the DHP Service Area to the Non-Delta Service area in MS indicates a difference of 5.1 deaths or 1.4 times greater than Non-Delta populations in MS; 56.9% of the excess deaths were related to risk factors associated with Maternal Health/Prematurity; 15.8% of the excess deaths were attributed to risk factors associated with Infant Health. Public Health Implications: Interventions that promote maternal health improvement (e.g., preconception health, health behaviors, perinatal care and improve infant health activities (e.g., promotion of safe sleep, breast feeding, and injury prevention) have the greatest potential for improving perinatal outcomes.

Learning Areas:
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
1. Describe factors that affect feto-infant mortality rates in the Mississippi Delta. 2. Identify areas with the greatest potential for reduction of feto-infant mortality rates in the Mississippi Delta.

Keywords: Maternal and Child Health, Risk Factors

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am qualified to be an abstract Author on the content because I am the Project Director for Tougaloo College/Delta HealthPartners Healthy Start Initiative
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.