Go Madison!

Madison made the national news in a New York Times article about infant mortality. Apparently Madison has had a dramatic decline in infant mortality among African American babies — to the point where their mortality rate is comparable to white babies.

“This kind of dramatic elimination of the black-white gap in a short period has never been seen,” Dr. Philip M. Farrell, professor of pediatrics and former dean of the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, said of the progress in Dane County.

The article says this is unusual and credits community cohesiveness, our public health department, Access Community Health, and ABC for Health.

Dr. Schlenker, the county health director, credits heightened outreach to young women by health workers and private groups. “I think it’s a community effect,” he said. “Pregnant women need to feel safe, cared for and valued. I believe that when they don’t, that contributes to premature birth and fetal loss in the sixth or seventh month.”

I know many of the health care providers that take care of mothers and babies in public health and at Access and they are impressive people. I’m so glad that they’re getting some of the recognition that they deserve!

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