Perinatal Periods of Risk

Perinatal Periods of Risk (PPOR): Healthy Start, in collaboration with the Delaware County Child Death Review Team, is currently conducting an Institutional Review Board-approved PPOR project at the county level. The purpose of the PPOR project is to collect data and review fetal and infant deaths to better understand why infants are dying during certain periods of risk.

The categories considered periods of risk are: maternal health and prematurity, maternal care, newborn care and infant health. In Delaware County, there were 13.5 deaths per 1,000 births (264 fetal deaths and 191 infant deaths) between 2008-12, which is higher than in the surrounding counties. Most of these deaths are related to risk factors in the maternal health and prematurity category.

The project is focused on determining why black, non-Hispanic women in Delaware County have poorer birth outcomes when compared with other demographic groups, leading to a disparity in infant death rates. Black, non-Hispanic women are about three times more likely than white women to experience a fetal or infant death (21.5 deaths/1,000 births vs. 7.4 deaths/1,000 births). Now in its second phase, the project is exploring risk factors associated with maternal health, prematurity and low birthweight to develop additional strategies for reducing this disparity.

For more information, please contact Joanne Craig, (610) 497-7344.

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