Alabama Infant Mortality Reduction Initiative
On December 20, 2017, Governor Kay Ivey convened the Children's Cabinet to address the issue of infant mortality in Alabama. On June 20, 2018, the State of Alabama Infant Mortality Reduction Plan was adopted and allotted funding to combat infant mortality as a pilot program in Macon, Montgomery, and Russell counties. The goal is to reduce infant mortality rates by 20 percent over the next five years. Governor Ivey named ADPH as the lead agency for the initiative. Collaborating agencies include:
- Alabama Department of Early Childhood Education
- Alabama Department of Human Resources
- Alabama Department of Mental Health
- Alabama Medicaid Agency
- Alabama Office of Minority Affairs
Effective October 1, 2018, the Alabama Infant Mortality Reduction Initiative launched seven evidence-based strategies to improve infant mortality rates in Macon, Montgomery, and Russell counties. The strategies include:
- Expanding home visitation programs, such as the Nurse Family Partnership and the parents as teachers programs. These programs provide support, parenting education, resource referrals, and school readiness for high-risk families who qualify.
- Conducting safe sleep education and outreach so that anyone providing care to an infant under the age of one places infants in a safe sleep environment at every sleep time.
- Expanding the use of the Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral as a Treatment tool to identify and provide referrals for women who may be experiencing substance abuse, domestic violence, or depression.
- Expanding Well Woman Clinics that provide pre-conception and interconception care to women of child-bearing age who are seen in the participating county health departments. The program aims to address chronic health conditions before or prior to a woman becoming pregnant as a means to improve birth outcomes.
- Promoting and improvimg the system of perinatal care designed for women to deliver infants at hospitals with appropriate training, staffing, and equipment necessary to meet the medical needs of the mother and the infant.
- Educating and promoting the utitilization of alpha-hydroxyprogesterone caproate (17P), a hormone treatment which is prescribed for women who have experienced a spontaneous previous preterm birth as a means to reduce her risk of having another preterm birth.
- Encouraging and supporting mothers to breastfeed their infants. Scientific evidence well documents the benefits for mom, infant, and the environment if breastfeeding is initiated and then continued through at last the first six months of life.
2019 Infant Mortality Reduction Summit
The 2019 Infant Mortality Reduction Summit will be held on September 26-27 at the Montgomery Marriot Prattville Hotel and Conference Center at Capitol Hill (Address: 2500 Legends Circle, Prattville, Alabama 36066). The theme is "Community Interventions Combatting Infant Mortality." There will be plenary and breakout sessions focused on equity, breastfeeding, mental health, and more. CEUs will be provided to social workers and nurses. Cost: $40. The deadline to register is September 13.
2018 Infant Mortality Reduction Summit
On September 14, 2018, collaborating partners held the 2018 Infant Mortality Reduction Summit to discuss the state of infant mortality in Alabama. View the agenda. Below are the presentations and videos from the summit:
Achieving Health Equity Is Not Impossible: Dig Deeper!
Tanya T. Funchess, DHA, MPH, MSM
Assistant Professor, College of Nursing and Health Professions
University of Southern Mississippi
Presentation | Video: RealPlayer | Windows Media | YouTube
Home Visiting as a Strategy to Reduce Infant Mortality
Tracye Strichik, Ph.D, Senior Director, Alabama Department of Early Childhood Education and Julie Preskitt, MSOT, MPH, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Health Care Organization and Policy, UAB
Page last updated: July 30, 2019