Improve Overall Health and Well-being and Reduce Premature Death

Infant Mortality Rate (# of children who die before their first birthday per 1,000 live births)


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Story Behind the Curve

Infant mortality is a key indicator of health and the effectiveness of the health care system. The United States infant mortality rate (5.9) remains consistently higher than that of other developed countries and Ohio's infant mortality rate (7.2 in 2017) is one of the worst in the US. Significant disparities persist in infant mortality, predominantly regarding race — the rate of infant mortality for babies born to black women is nearly 3 times the rate for babies born to white women in Ohio. Due to the relatively small number of births to Licking County residents each year (2006 births in 2018), our annual rate per 1,000 births fluctuates significantly. We also track this rate as a 3-year average, which is 7.31 for 2016-18.

Infant mortality is associated with many factors before, during and after birth including maternal health, prenatal and postnatal care and access to quality health care. The leading causes of infant mortality in Licking County during 2018, in order, were:

  • Low birthweight and preterm birth
  • Birth defects
  • Unintentional asphyxia 

Together these causes accounted for the majority of infant deaths.

What We Do

LCHD Child Safety Seat Program provides car seats and booster seats to low income families through the Ohio Buckles Buckeyes and Child Injury Prevention programs and local funders including the Licking County United Way with support from LCHD general funds.  PM Child Health Car Seats Distributed

LCHD Healthy Momand Baby Program

Cribs for Kids Pack and Play distribution program

Newborn Home Visiting Program



Licking Memorial Hospital: Newborn Home Visiting

Help Me Grow Home Visiting: Help Me Grow is a program for expectant parents, newborns, infants and toddlers and provides health and developmental services so children start school healthy and ready to learn.

Early head start serves families with children under the age of three whose income is below 100 percent of the poverty level. Their goal is to make sure the children they serve are developmentally on target and the parents have the support and skills they need. Questions and referrals can be directed to LEADS Head Start at (740) 349-8606.


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