Online Program

IMPACT of infant mortality awareness on the health behaviors of African American MEN in memphis, Tennessee

Monday, November 4, 2013 : 3:30 p.m. - 3:50 p.m.

Justin Tate, LeMoyne-Owen College/Meharry Medical College HBCU Wellness Program, LeMoyne-Owen College, Memphis, TN
Nikia Grayson, MPH, RN, LeMoyne-Owen College/Meharry Medical College HBCU Wellness Program, LeMoyne-Owen College, Memphis, TN
Calverta McMorris, Ed.D., LeMoyne-Owen College-Meharry Medical College HBCU Wellness Program, LeMoyne-Owen College, Memphis, TN
Kimberly Lamar, PhD, MPH, MSEH, Center for Urban Leadership and Social Justice, LeMoyne-Owen College, Memphis, TN
INTRODUCTION: Research suggests that a father's presence before, during, and after pregnancy has a major impact on infant mortality within the first year of life. Data also indicate that even after adjusting for socioeconomic risk factors, poor birth outcomes and infant deaths were highest for African American babies with absent fathers. The purpose of this student project was to inform African-American men in an urban community in Memphis, TN about infant mortality and their role in increasing a baby's chance of surviving its first year of life. METHODS: Barbershop patrons were asked to complete a questionnaire to ascertain if they knew their role as a father could impact the baby's first year of life. A Pre/Post survey was administered to determine their level of knowledge on infant mortality, prenatal care, as well as family planning. Additionally, patrons received a brief education session on infant mortality health-related topics. RESULTS: More than 50% of the men surveyed did not have a high level of knowledge about prenatal care, nor did they understand the importance of their paternal role both before and after the birth. Post-tests showed significant knowledge gained in ways to prevent infant mortality, how to help expectant mothers with prenatal care, and the importance of family planning. DISCUSSION: Increasing the role of the father in a baby's first year of life, as well as during pregnancy could play a major role in decrease the rates of infant mortality, particularly among African Americans.

Learning Areas:

Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Public health or related education
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Explain the role of fathers in the prevention of infant mortality.

Keyword(s): Infant Mortality, African American

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a Student Health Ambassador in the LeMoyne-College/Meharry Medical College HBCU Wellness Program.
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.