Black infant mortality rates down, but racial gap persists - Metro - The Boston Globe: The stairs to the attic were getting harder to climb for Stefanie Lawrence, then a 19-year-old pregnant with her first child. The air was always damp, aggravating her chronic asthma. She had moved there, into her relative’s home, because she and her mother could no longer afford a place of their own.
Worse still, Lawrence had no health insurance. She worried her unborn child would be affected by the turmoil buffeting her.
But three months into her pregnancy, a cousin told her about city health department nurses who help mothers navigate pregnancy and the months that follow, part of a campaign to reduce the troubling infant mortality rate among black women. She signed up.
And on a summer day in 2012, Lawrence gave birth to Destiny, a healthy, 7-pound baby girl.
Today in Boston, black infants such as Destiny are more likely to celebrate their first birthdays than ever before.
A report scheduled to be released Friday shows that infant mortality — the measure of how many babies die during the first year of life — has reached a historic low for black children.