Search This Blog

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Canada gets a "C" for infant mortality

The statistics for infant mortality rates in our group of 17 peer countries is in and Canada Receives a "C".... ranking only above the UK and US for worst infant death rates in it's peer group.

While Canada's infant mortality rates have greatly improved since the 60's falling significantly between 1960 and 1980—from 27 deaths per 1,000 live births to 10 deaths- and continued to improve in the 1980s and 1990s, the lowering numbers have basically stalled since 1998, although it did drop from 5.4 in 2005 to 5.0 in 2006.

Even though Canada’s infant mortality rate has decreased since the 1960s, the rate of improvement has been lower than in most of Canada’s peer countries. Japan’s infant mortality rate, for example, was higher than Canada’s in 1960, at 31 infants per 1,000 live births. In 2006 it was 2.6, about half the rate in Canada.

In 1990, Canada ranked 5th among the 17 peer countries. It is now tied with the U.K. for the second-highest infant mortality rate—only the U.S. performs worse.

The study suggests that some of the statistical differences between countries may be due to different reporting measures and classifications. Other researchers suggest that Canada’s ability to reduce infant mortality is constrained by the successful delivery of more preterm babies and babies with very low birth weight. These babies face higher risk of death. Still more researchers point to vastly improved infertility treatments also bringing about far more multiple births as a factor in the infant mortality rates of Canada.

.... But no where do they talk about the fact that Canada and the US lead the pack with the highest numbers of Caesarean Sections and medical interventions in child births. I think that if we really truly want to analyse the abominable infant mortality rates that our country has right now, we need to point the finger in the direction that shows the greatest impact: The medicalization of Child Birth and the interference of the medical machine trying turn maternity care into a 9 to 5 business and to press birthing women through a cookie cutter than they are incapable of fitting.

Now THAT is a Study that I really want to read.


Infant Mortality

[ September 2009 ]
Description Grade


Infant Mortality

The number of infant deaths per 1,000 live births.

Key Messages

  • Canada gets a “C” and now ties the U.K. for 15th place out of 17 peer countries. Its infant mortality rate is shockingly high for a country at Canada’s level of socio-economic development.
  • Although Canada has dramatically reduced its infant mortality rate over the past few decades, other countries have done better.
  • Infant mortality is a sentinel indicator of child health and the well-being of a society over time.

Has Canada improved its relative performance on infant mortality?

Infant Mortality

HERE to read the entire article