Global Infant Mortality Ranking Called Compromised

Todd Neale – MedPage Today – Tuesday, 21 February 2012 (originally published 18 Feb)

The variation in rankings of perinatal and infant mortality between countries, which is often used as an indicator of healthcare quality, is probably related to differences in how the smallest and most premature babies are registered in national databases, researchers found.

Some countries, such as the U.S., Canada, the U.K. (England, Wales), register babies no matter how small or premature if they are showing signs of life at delivery, which is consistent with the World Health Organization’s definition of live birth.

Others countries have certain restrictions to registration, requiring newborns to reach thresholds of birthweight, gestational age, and survival after delivery — thus showing a reasonable chance of long-term survival — to be listed . . .

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