Improving the well-being of mothers, infants, and children is an important public health goal. Their well-being determines the health of the next generation and can help predict future public health challenges for families, communities, and the health care system. Moreover, healthy birth outcomes and early identification and treatment of developmental delays and disabilities and other health conditions among infants can prevent death or disability and enable children to reach their full potential.
The risk of infant mortality and pregnancy-related complications can be reduced by increasing access to quality healthcare and promoting healthy behaviors. While Erie County’s infant mortality rates have decreased in recent years, racial and ethnic disparities in infant mortality rates have increased. Successful implementation of local strategies will result in more babies who are born healthy, at full-term and celebrate their first birthdays, and disparities in preterm birth and infant mortality will be eliminated.