Infant mortality refers to the number of deaths within the first year of life; it is considered to be an indicator of the general health of the entire population, reflecting the relationship between causes of infant mortality and upstream determinants of population health such as economic, social and environmental conditions. Factors such as socio-economic circumstances, parental behaviour, ethnicity and poor access to health care are all potential risk factors for infant death. Reducing infant mortality overall and the gap between the richest and poorest groups are part of the Government’s strategy for public health .
During the period 2011-2013 approximately 20 children died each year within their first year of life; a rate of 4.9 per 1,000 live births. Wakefield is not significantly different to the regional or national averages (with rates of 4.3 and 4.0 respectively). Since 2001-2003 the infant mortality rate has decreased, from 5.3 per 1,000.
Because the numbers of infant deaths in Wakefield are relatively small it is not possible to produce rates for smaller geographical levels. However, analysis is available for many of the risk factors associated with infant mortality.
Further information on infant mortality is available on the JSNA website, under the people section: