UA researching high statewide infant mortality rate

UA researching high statewide infant mortality rate
The University of Alabama school of social work is using a plan called Al-SBIRT to help study and eventually reduce infant mortality in the state through improved wellness among mothers at risk. (Source: WBRC)

TUSCALOOSA , Ala. (WBRC) - Why does Alabama’s infant mortality rate, remain one of the highest in the country? In Alabama, more babies are dying faster than the national average.

The University of Alabama school of social work is using a plan called Al-SBIRT to help study and eventually reduce infant mortality in the state through improved wellness among mothers at risk.

Research has shown women in Alabama face many risks that influence the state's high infant mortality rate nearly 9 percent, when the national average is just almost 6 percent.

Factors include substance abuse, mental health, and domestic abuse, that could be causing the high number of babies dying way too soon.

UA infant mortality project coordinator Dr. Paul Moon said they want to implement the Al-SBIRT model in OBYGN offices starting in Montgomery, Macon, and Russell counties. This initiative will incorporate an alcohol drug screen and intervention plans for moms or moms to be.

“For the sake of not only the woman but the children that’s affiliated to the patient, not only current but future. It’s working towards positive behavioral change,” said Dr. Moon.

The counties picked for the treatment and screening research first have the highest infant mortality rates in the state.

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