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Infant and neonatal mortality rates improving

11 March 2015

Today the Office of National Statistics (ONS) released their annual figures on infant and neonatal mortality.

The main points include:
• There were 2,686 infant deaths (deaths under 1 year) in England and Wales in 2013, compared with 2,912 infant deaths in 2012 and 6,381 in 1983.
• In 2013, the infant mortality rate was 3.8 deaths per 1,000 live births, the lowest ever recorded in England and Wales. This compares with an infant mortality rate of 4.0 deaths per 1,000 live births in 2012 and 10.1 deaths per 1,000 live births in 1983.
• Infant mortality rates were lowest for babies of mothers aged 25 to 29 years (3.4 deaths per 1,000 live births) and highest for babies of mothers aged under 20 years (6.1 deaths per 1,000 live births).
• In 2013, the infant mortality rates for very low birthweight babies (under 1,500 grams) and low birthweight babies (under 2,500 grams) were 164.0 and 32.4 deaths per 1,000 live births respectively.

Bliss Chief Executive Caroline Davey said, “The reduction in infant and neonatal mortality is a step in the right direction, but the UK still has one of the highest rates in Western Europe. It is vital that the most vulnerable babies receive one-to-one nursing care to give them the best chance of survival.”

This was highlighted in today’s The Times newspaper.

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