Children and Families
Infant Mortality by Mother's Race/Ethnicity

Not Available


Infant Mortality Rate by Race/Ethnicity, 2012-18

What does this measure?

The number of deaths per 1,000 live births per year for infants under the age of one year, averaged over five years by race and ethnicity.

Why is this important?

Infant mortality is considered an indicator of maternal health and the overall health of a community. It is also a marker of the availability and use of quality health care for pregnant women and infants.

How is the region doing?

In 2012-18 there were racial and ethnic disparities in each of the region's counties as well as at the state and nation. Infants of African American mothers in the region's counties had the highest infant mortality rate at 2 to 3 times higher than white mothers. Worcester County's infant mortality rates was the highest of all the counties in the region for each group. Middlesex and Norfolk's rates were inline or slightly better than Massachusetts rates, and below the national average for all groups.

Middlesex is similar to the state, except its rates are lower for white and Hispanic mothers at 2.6 per 1,000 live births. Norfolk has a higher rate than the state for African American infants (8.9) and lower for white infants (2.8).

Why do these disparities exist?

Racial disparities in infant mortality emerge from systems that perpetuate structural racism. Higher death rates among infants of color are tied to maternal access to prenatal care throughout pregnancy and quality of care. Research has shown that mothers of color are less likely to receive prenatal care in part because they tend to live in communities with fewer health care providers including neonatal services. While women of color from under-resourced communities gain access to health care via Medicaid, they are often underinsured. Discriminatory treatment by health care providers influences whether the health care needs of women of color are adequately addressed, putting mothers and their infants at higher risk of mortality. The racism experienced by expectant mothers of color in their everyday lives at work and in their neighborhoods (e.g. food insecurity, environmental toxins) place mothers and their infants at higher risk of premature death. The overall health of the expectant mother's color and access to comprehensive health care including gynecological services before pregnancy also contribute to premature infant death.

Notes about the data

Data not available for all race and ethnicity groups where the counts were too small to provide reliable rates.

Infant Mortality Rate by Race/Ethnicity, 2012-18
AsianBlack or African AmericanHispanicWhite
United States41155
Massachusetts3854
Middlesex3833
Norfolk93
Worcester1055

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, County Health Rankings
Notes: Rates per 1,000 births. Data not presented for all racial/ethnic groups where the counts were too small to provide reliable rates.








INDICATORS TREND
Early Prenatal Care by Mother's Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Infant Mortality by Mother's Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Children Living in Poverty Increasing
Children Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Single-Parent Families Increasing
Single-Parent Families by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Disengaged Youth Decreasing
Reports of Domestic Violence Maintaining
Arts, Entertainment and Recreation Establishments Increasing
Households Without Vehicles Maintaining
Means of Transportation to Work Not Applicable
Average Travel Time to Work Increasing
Households With Internet Access Not Applicable
Voter Participation Rate Decreasing
Average Charitable Contribution Maintaining
Protected Land Not Applicable
Drug Poisoning Mortality Rate Increasing
Crimes Against People Decreasing
Incarceration Rates, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Change in Total Population Increasing
Change in Population by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Foreign-Born Population Increasing
Language Diversity Increasing
Population by Age Not Applicable
Change in Population by Age/Gender Not Applicable
Seniors Living Alone Decreasing
People with Disabilities Maintaining
Change in Total Jobs by Sector Not Applicable
Unemployment Rate Maintaining
Unemployment Rate by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Average Salary by Sector Not Applicable
High-Tech Jobs Decreasing
Female to Male Earnings Ratio Maintaining
Prekindergarten Participation Increasing
Student Performance on Grade 3 English, by Student Subgroup Not Applicable
Student Performance on Grade 8 Math by Student Group Not Applicable
Chronically Absent Students Decreasing
High School Cohort Graduation Rate by Student Group Increasing
Education Levels of Adults Not Applicable
Education Levels of Adults, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
People Living in Poverty Increasing
People Living in Poverty, by Education Level Not Applicable
People Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Household Receiving Temporary Assistance Maintaining
Participation in Food Assistance by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Median Household Income Maintaining
Median Household Income, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Living Wage Not Applicable
80/20 Income Ratio Maintaining
Access to Financial Services, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Homeownership Rates Increasing
Homeownership Rates, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Cost of Homeownership Increasing
Cost of Homeownership, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Cost of Rent Not Applicable
Cost of Rent, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Homelessness Increasing
Early Prenatal Care by Mother's Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Infant Mortality by Mother's Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Children Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Single-Parent Families by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Incarceration Rates, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Change in Population by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Unemployment Rate by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Student Performance on Grade 8 Math by Student Group Not Applicable
Education Levels of Adults, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
People Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Participation in Food Assistance by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Median Household Income, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Access to Financial Services, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Homeownership Rates, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Cost of Homeownership, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable


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