Sunday, October 19, 2008
US Infant Deaths Drop but Still Exceed Rates in Most Industrialized Nations
NY Times: Infant Deaths Decline in U.S., by Gardiner Harris:
Infant deaths in the United States declined 2 percent in 2006, government researchers reported Wednesday, but the rate still remains well above that of most industrialized countries and is one of many indicators suggesting that Americans pay more but get less from their health care system.
Infant mortality has long been considered one of the most important indicators of the health of a nation and the quality of its medical system. In 1960, the United States ranked 12th lowest in the world, but by 2004, the latest year for which comparisons were issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, that ranking had dropped to 29th lowest.
This international gap has widened even though the United States devotes a far greater share of its national wealth to health care than other countries. In 2006, Americans spent $6,714 per capita on health — more than twice the average of other industrialized countries.