Posted: 12:22 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 9, 2013

5 Butler County areas ‘hot spots’ for infant deaths

By Hannah Poturalski

Staff Writer

HAMILTON —

The Butler County Partnership to Reduce Infant Mortality held its monthly meeting on Oct. 8 with about 25 people gathering at the Butler County Educational Service Center as part of the effort to reduce Ohio’s ranking of 49th in the nation for a high infant mortality rate, only behind Indiana.

Butler County is one of nine urban areas being represented in the Ohio Equity Institute, a partnership between the Ohio Department of Health and CityMatCH, a national organization with expertise in maternal and child health. Local partners include the Butler County Health Department, Butler County Educational Service Center, Butler County WIC (Women, Infants and Children), High Hopes program and Primary Health Solutions.

October is also Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month. During Infant Loss Remembrance Day on Oct. 15, people across the world are encouraged to light a candle for one hour at 7 p.m. as part of “Wave of Light.”

Madeline Marquardt, of Primary Health Solutions, said five census tracts in Butler County have been identified as “hot spots” for infant mortality, according to a study by Miami University. The areas include two sections of Hamilton and portions of Fairfield, Middletown, Monroe and Lemon Twp.

“We’re just not seeing any improvements in the Midwest,” Marquardt said. “For all races, (Butler County) is in the middle of the other counties. For white babies, we’re at some of the worst.”

The next step is an analysis of Butler County’s 127 infant deaths since 2008 to determine when, how and why the babies died, said Jenny Bailer, director of nursing for Butler County Health Department. Bailer said a group of infant mortality epidemiologists from the local and state departments of health and CityMatCH should have an analysis complete by January.

The partnership meets the second Tuesday of each month from 4 to 6 p.m. at Butler County ESC, 400 N. Erie Blvd., Suite A, Hamilton. Anyone interested in joining the partnership can attend the next meeting on Nov. 12.


NEXT MEETING

Butler County Partnership to Reduce Infant Mortality

When: 4 to 6 p.m. Nov. 12

Where: Butler County Educational Service Center, 400 N. Erie Blvd., Suite A, Hamilton

Contact: 513-863-1770

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