Infant Mortality measures the number of infant deaths that occur before age 1 per 1,000 live births. The ranks are based on a two-year average using the most recently available data from the National Center for Health Statistics.
Infant mortality is associated with many factors surrounding birth, including but not limited to: maternal health, prenatal care, and access to quality healthcare. Congenital malformations are the leading cause of infant mortality followed closely by disorders related to preterm birth and low birthweight. Infant mortality is commonly used to compare health between different countries because of its association with access to health care in the prenatal period and first year of life. The nation’s overall infant mortality rate is consistently higher than other developed countries, and significant racial and ethnic disparities exist. The demographics of the mother are important predictors of infant mortality, with minority women and low socioeconomic status women having the highest rates. In addition to the demographic factors, there are also many health care system factors that influence infant mortality. Improving access to and utilization of ongoing prenatal care is a key strategy towards decreasing infant mortality, as well as reducing the teen birth rate and maternal smoking. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has put together a fact sheet on preventing infant mortality at www.hhs.gov/news/factsheet/infant.html.
 Singh GK, Yu SM. Infant mortality in the United States: Trends, differentials, and projections, 1950 through 2010. Am J Public Health. 1995;85(7):957-964.
 Mathews TJ. Infant mortality statistics from the 2006 period linked birth/infant death data set. National Vital Statistics Reports. 2010;58(17):1.
 MacDorman MF, and Mathews TJ. Recent Trends in Infant Mortality in the United States. Hyattsville, MD: US Dept. of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics; 2008.
The measures tracked by America's Health Rankings are those actions that can affect the future health of the population. For a state to improve the health of its population, efforts must focus on these measures, these determinants of health.
|State||Changes Over Time||Rank||Value||Rank||Value||Take Action|
|New Hampshire||1||4.70||View Actions|
|New Jersey||7||5.40||View Actions|
|New Mexico||12||5.90||View Actions|
|New York||8||5.50||View Actions|
|North Carolina||46||8.30||View Actions|
|North Dakota||22||6.60||View Actions|
|Rhode Island||22||6.60||View Actions|
|South Carolina||46||8.30||View Actions|
|South Dakota||33||7.40||View Actions|
|West Virginia||37||7.60||View Actions|