Central African Republic
Infant mortality rates by race: United States, 2015-2017 Average. During 2015-2017 (average), the infant mortality rate (per 1,000 live births) in the United States was highest for black infants (10.7), followed by American Indian / Alaska Natives (8.4), whites (4.9) and Asian / Pacific Islanders (4.1).
In 2019, the infant mortality in the USA was at about 5.6 deaths per 1,000 live births.
As can be seen above, most countries with a high infant mortality rate are developing countries or emerging countries , most of which are located in Africa .
|Child deaths in the first year of life per 1,000 live births|
With a newborn mortality rate of 0.9 deaths per 1,000 babies in their first 28 days of life, UNICEF deems Japan to be the safest place to give birth in the world. According to a Japanese-Canadian study, many women in Japan stop working once they become pregnant.
While in 1990, 12.6 million children under age five died, in 2016 that number fell to 5.6 million children . However, despite advances, there are still 15,000 under-five deaths per day from largely preventable causes.
The two main reasons for the higher U.S. mortality were “congenital malformations, which patients cannot really do much about other than ensuring adequate screening during pregnancy, and high risk of sudden unexpected deaths in infancy, which should largely be preventable through appropriate sleeping arrangements,”
The five leading causes of infant death in 2018 were: Birth defects. Preterm birth and low birth weight. Maternal pregnancy complications. Sudden infant death syndrome. Injuries (e.g., suffocation).
Japan’s infant mortality rate in 1991 was four per 1,000, the lowest in the world. Contributing factors are the universal use of the Boshi Kenko Techo (maternal-child health handbook) and universal access to care. Most births occur to women aged 25-29 years and there are few unmarried mothers.
The infant mortality rate for U.S. in 2020 was 5.681 deaths per 1000 live births, a 1.17% decline from 2019.
In 2018, the state of Mississippi had the highest infant mortality rate in the United States, with 8.3 deaths per 1,000 live births.
IMR is particularly high in the first month of life, with a neonatal mortality of 40 out of every 1000 live births. The main causes are, in order of importance, neonatal causes (26%), child pneumonia (21%), malaria (18%), diarrhoea (16%), HIV/AIDS (6%), measles (5%) and accidents (2%).
These highest – mortality countries , with Somalia leading the list, are more than 15 years behind the world’s current average life expectancy of about 70 years and approximately 30 years behind the global leaders: Japan and Italy at 83 years (Figure 1).