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Tuesday, May 09, 2006Here we sit in the United States of America. A country that is supposed to have an amazingly superior health care system and a "better way of doing things."
Now, most regular readers here know that I don't tend to agree with "our way of doing things" when it comes to birth. Hospital births these days tend to be highly medicalized and full of unnecessary interventions. The truth is, that just isn't working for us.
The U.S. Ranks 2nd to Last in Infant Mortality Among Industrialized Nations
Among 33 industrialized nations, the United States is tied with Hungary, Malta, Poland and Slovakia with a death rate of nearly 5 per 1,000 babies, according to a new report. Latvia's rate is 6 per 1,000.
In the analysis of global infant mortality, Japan had the lowest newborn death rate, 1.8 per 1,000 and four countries tied for second place with 2 per 1,000 _ the Czech Republic, Finland, Iceland and Norway.
The article tends to blame most of the problem on higher rates of teen pregnancy and obesity and also cites the fact that economic disparities coupled with our health care crisis is responsible.
I have no doubt that plays a role, but the United States also tends to have much higher rates of iatrogenic issues for both mother and baby than many of these other countries. In fact, of the top five, only Japan is anywhere near as intervention happy as the United States.