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Black Infant Mortality Rate Still Higher Than White Infants

State health leaders say their effort to bring down the infant mortality rate is working. But they still have a long way to go.

The number of infants that passed away in 2013 decreased by two-tenths of a percent compared to the previous year. But black infants are still dying at more than twice the rate of white infants.

Dr. Mary DiOrio, the state’s medical director, says Ohio continues to put out initiatives that raise awareness on healthy pregnancies and infants along with programs that connect pregnant women with adequate health care - such as a pilot project known as “Centering Pregnancy.”

“They have peer support. They get education during the process and it’s been shown to really help moms in their pregnancies and help them have healthy babies,” DiOrio said.

Despite the new numbers, Ohio still has one of the worst infant mortality rates in the country.